Tamil Nadu labourer P Essakkimuthu, who set his wife and children ablaze before immolating himself outside the Tirunelveli Collectorate on Monday, succumbed to his burn injuries on Wednesday, The Hindu reported.
“The victim suffered a multiple organ failure,” a doctor at the Tirunelveli Medical College Hospital said. Essakkimuthu’s wife Subbulakshmi, and two daughters, four-year-old Mathi Saranya and 18-month-old Akshaya Bharanitha, had died on Monday. The couple had been protesting against the alleged inaction of the police over their complaint against a moneylender.
A daily wage labourer, Essakkimuthu, had borrowed Rs 1.45 lakh from a moneylender, identified as Muthulakshmi, in Tirunelveli. Though the couple had repaid more than Rs 2 lakh in interest, they were allegedly being subjected to constant harassment.
Essakkimuthu had filed complaints at six weekly grievance redressal meetings at the collectorate, his brother Gopi said. Despite being directed by the collectorate, the police took no action against the moneylender, Gopi added.
On Wednesday, Gopi and other relatives refused to accept Esakkimuthu’s body and blocked traffic in the area in protest. The relatives accused the police of supporting the moneylenders, while the police said that the accumulated debt had driven Esakkimuthu to kill himself and his family.
“The superintendent of police is attempting to bury the facts by portraying my brother as a wilful defaulter,” Gopi was quoted as saying.