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Torture by Police, Forced Disappearance

& Other Ill Treatment

In the early years of the 21st Century, 2000 to 2025                                        

Republic of India

Torture, abuse, and rape by law enforcement and security officials have been reported. A bill intended to prevent torture remains pending. Abuses against prisoners, particularly minorities and members of the scheduled castes, by prison staff are common. Figures reported to the National Human Rights Commission suggest that 1,966 deaths occurred in judicial or police custody in 2018.

Security forces battling regional insurgencies continue to be implicated in extrajudicial killings, rape, torture, kidnappings, and destruction of homes. While the criminal procedure code requires that the government approve the prosecution of security force members, approval is rarely granted, leading to impunity.

[Freedom House Country Report, 2020]

Description: Description: Description: Description: India

CAUTION:  The following links have been culled from the web to illuminate the situation in India.  Some of these links may lead to websites that present allegations that are unsubstantiated or even false.  No attempt has been made to validate their authenticity or to verify their content.



If you are looking for material to use in a term-paper, you are advised to scan the postings on this page and others to see which aspects of Torture by Authorities are of particular interest to you.  You might be interested in exploring the moral justification for inflicting pain or inhumane or degrading treatment or punishment in order to obtain critical information that may save countless lives, or to elicit a confession for a criminal act, or to punish someone to teach him a lesson outside of the courtroom.  Perhaps your paper might focus on some of the methods of torture, like fear, extreme temperatures, starvation, thirst, sleep deprivation, suffocation, or immersion in freezing water.  On the other hand, you might choose to write about the people acting in an official capacity who perpetrate such cruelty.  There is a lot to the subject of Torture by Authorities.  Scan other countries as well as this one.  Draw comparisons between activity in adjacent countries and/or regions.  Meanwhile, check out some of the Term-Paper resources that are available on-line.

*** ARCHIVES ***

2020 Country Reports on Human Rights Practices: India

U.S. Dept of State Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor, 30 March 2021

[accessed 25 July 2021]


The law prohibits torture, but there were reports that police forces allegedly employed such practices.

Police beatings of prisoners resulted in custodial deaths (see section 1.a.).

In August 2019 CHRI’s Inside Haryana Prisons publication reported more than 47 percent of inmates were victims of torture and inhuman treatment during police remand.

On August 28, AII alleged that members of the Delhi police committed human rights violations during February riots in Delhi. The report documented complicity with violence, torture of arrested protesters while in custody, and excessive use of force.


Physical Conditions: Prisons were often severely overcrowded, and food, medical care, sanitation, and environmental conditions frequently were inadequate. Potable water was not universally available. Prisons and detention centers remained underfunded and understaffed, and lacked sufficient infrastructure. Prisoners were sometimes physically mistreated.


Due to delays in completion of repatriation procedures, foreign nationals often remained incarcerated beyond the expiration of their sentences. The PSI 2019 revealed there were 765 prisoners belonging to the “other” category. According to experts these were most likely prisoners who completed their sentence but were yet to be released. This included approximately 250 Rohingya arrested for illegal entry, of whom 150 had reportedly completed their sentences.

Hundreds of Police Killings in India, but No Mass Protests

Jeffrey Gettleman and Sameer Yasir, New York Times, New Delhi, 20 August 2020

[accessed 20 August 2020]

A father and son were hauled into a small police station in the southern Indian town of Sathankulam in June after arguing with police officers. When friends and family members went to the station, they heard screams emanating from inside, growing louder as night fell.

The next afternoon, the two men, Ponraj Jeyaraj, 58, and Beniks Jeyaraj, 31, stumbled outside surrounded by officers, blood dripping down the backs of their legs. They had clearly been tortured in police custody, family members and lawyers in the town said.

“Please, find a way to get us bail,” Ponraj Jeyaraj begged his sister, Jaya Joseph, as he was taken to a hospital, she recalled. She said her brother’s last words to her were: “We will not survive another day.”

Father and son died hours apart, from severe internal injuries, a few days later.

The use of torture is explicitly banned in India, but in police stations, it happens all the time, activists said. There’s even a common euphemism for it: third-degree interrogation.

First-degree interrogation is hard questioning. Second-degree is physical assault, including slapping and beating with sticks.

And third-degree interrogation, according to rights activists and several police officers who spoke on condition of anonymity and acknowledged its use, involves physical torture, like what the Jeyarajes appear to have been subjected to in June.

Family members, including Ms. Joseph, Ponshekar Nadar, a son-in-law of Ponraj Jeyaraj, and two others who saw the dead bodies, said that large pieces of skin had been ripped off the men’s buttocks. They also said that doctors at the hospital told them that both men had suffered grave internal injuries, possibly from blunt objects being thrust inside their rectums.

UP cops ‘thrash’ migrants, 12000 protest

Piyush Srivastava, The Telegraph, Lucknow, 19 May 2020

[accessed 19 May 2020]

More than 12,000 migrant workers from Bihar gathered [to return home] on a highway in the western Uttar Pradesh district of Saharanpur on Sunday, alleging police torture at a shelter home  and demanding they [the migrants,] be allowed to walk the 1,200-odd kilometres home.

“This morning, 10 policemen arrived and beat us with batons. They told us we were a blot on the face of the country and should die. So we left the place and decided to resume our foot journey,” said Lal Bahadur, 25, who had been stopped in Saharanpur on May 2 while walking home to Siwan, Bihar, from Patiala in Punjab.

Dalits’ ‘torture’ in custody: Two cops suspended in Punjab

Manish Sirhindi, Times of India, 9 May 2020

[accessed 10 May 2020]

When the two men went to the police station to file a complaint against four policemen who had allegedy taken away Rs 20,000 from them on Wednesday, they were confined there.  The complainant also alleged that the policemen tortured Simranjeet and Lakhbir and even poured petrolon the former's private parts.  Lakhbir sustained minor injuries, but Simranjeet had to be admitted to Malerkotia Civil hospital.

Freedom House Country Report

2020 Edition

[accessed 17 May 2020]


Torture, abuse, and rape by law enforcement and security officials have been reported. A bill intended to prevent torture remains pending. Abuses against prisoners, particularly minorities and members of the scheduled castes, by prison staff are common. Figures reported to the National Human Rights Commission suggest that 1,966 deaths occurred in judicial or police custody in 2018.

Security forces battling regional insurgencies continue to be implicated in extrajudicial killings, rape, torture, kidnappings, and destruction of homes. While the criminal procedure code requires that the government approve the prosecution of security force members, approval is rarely granted, leading to impunity.

BSF’s torture condemnable

The Daily Star, 12 May 2019

[accessed 12 May 2019]

We condemn the brutal torture of a Bangladeshi man by India’s Border Security Force (BSF). As this newspaper reported yesterday, Md Azim Uddin, after having illegally trespassed into India to smuggle cattle into Bangladesh, was caught by the BSF and tortured for three days. And at one point during the torture, BSF men used pliers to pull out all 10 of his fingernails. While we cannot condone the practice of illegally trespassing into another country, torturing a detainee is completely unacceptable and a reprehensible crime.

Ganderbal family alleges torture, police says can't tolerate such incidents

Javid Ahmad, Rising Kashmir, Srinagar, 10 November 2018

[accessed 11 November 2018]

On last Tuesday Shabir Ahmad Raina was sleeping at his uncle’s house at Warapahow in central Kashmir’s Ganderbal district when Army, according to the family, barged into their house, broke window glasses and dragged four relatives out of the house.

“In the vehicle, the forces pulled the beard of elders (Gani and Sunaullah) and burnt it. The forces stopped at the University gate (Kashmir University) and threatened to shoot us,” Shabir said while withering in pain.

“They brought cold water and kerosene or petrol and the put a curtain. I was suffocating and begged them to let me free. Some four men came and tied me with ropes. They sat on our legs, chest and started to pour kerosene cum water into my mouth and simultaneously asked me to speak. Only God could hear our shouts there,” he narrates.

Murder accused cries cop torture as victim returns alive

Express News Service, Bargarh, 12 July 2018

[accessed 13 July 2018]

A day after 19-year-old youth Jitu Dansana of Piplipali village in Paikmal returned home  after being presumed dead, one of the two charged with murdering him accused the police of torture to extract confession on Wednesday.Halu Gurla, the 22-year-old accused of Bisipada in Bargarh town, said police picked up him while he was sleeping in his house and took him to a police station in Sambalpur where he was physically tortured. Later, the cops took him to Padampur police station where he was again tortured both physically and mentally, Halu claimed.

Under duress and frightened over the attitude of police, Halu confessed to killing Jitu. “I had to languish in jail for about six months for the crime which I did not commit. My family members had to struggle hard for my release from jail. They borrowed money from people for my bail and the debt is yet to be repaid,” he said.

We were tortured with electric shocks for a confession, say youths ‘wrongly held’ for rape and murders

Gayas Eapen, Times News Network (The Times of India) TNN, Mewat, 11 Mar 2018

[accessed 25 March 2018]

The four youths, who had been picked up by the Haryana Police in connection with the Dingerheri gang rapes and murders in 2016, returned home to Mewat’s Mohammadpur Ahir village on Friday after the Punjab and Haryana high court granted them interim bail on Wednesday.

But the memories of the 19 months that the four spent in jail still haunt Sandeep, Amarjeet, Karamjeet and Rahul. They still shiver when they recount the “physical and mental torture” they faced in police custody. “After the arrest, we were kept separately, beaten up and tortured. Electric current was passed through our body, we were waterboarded,” alleged Amarjeet.

“Though physical torture ended after we were moved to Bhondsi jail, other inmates would intimidate us there,” he added. Karamjeet said, “I still have the marks of police torture on my thighs. They beat us to make us confess to the crime we did not commit.”

Forcing confession by torture rampant in country, first of its kind report reveals

Harish V Nair & edited by Manas Joshi, India Today, New Delhi, 10 December 2017

The Milli Gazette, 8 MAY 2015

[accessed 12 December 2017]

A first-of-its kind report compiled after interviewing 60 former judges of the Supreme Court, including eight Chief Justices, has concluded that the country's criminal justice system is in crisis owing to rampant torture of the accused to force confessions, fabrication of evidence and wrongful convictions.

A staggering 1,575 people died in police custody in the country between 2001 and 2016, and 16,000 were injured. But less than 50% of custodial deaths led to a case being registered, NCRB figures say. Some 74 deaths in police custody have been recorded in India so far this year itself.

Though 38 judges confirmed that torture was rampant, their views are divided One group felt torture is a necessary evil, while the other opined torture is inherently wrong and had no place within law. Five out of 12 former judges justifying torture said police resorted to torture because probe agencies work under strenuous conditions, without adequate time and independence to investigate cases.

Aslamuddin, 18, a Student Tortured in a Police Station in Kerala

Asian Human Rights Commission - Urgent Appeals Programme, Urgent Appeal Case: AHRC-UAC-058-2015

The Milli Gazette, 8 MAY 2015

[accessed 17 May 2015]

CASE NARRATIVE - Mr. Aslamuddin is an 18-year-old student of Venmanad School in a town called Pavaratty in Kerala. On 5th April 2015 at about 11 a.m., Aslamuddin was riding his bike through the Chuku Bazaar Road along with his friends, Avinash and Jamshir. Having two or more pillion riders on a bike is an offence under the Motor Vehicles Act of India. The police stopped Aslamuddin for riding pillion on a bike with his two friends. The police officer who stopped Aslamuddin seized his license and asked him to report to Pavaratty police station along with his bike for payment of fine.

The next day, following the instruction, at about 11:30 a.m., Aslamuddin reported in the police station with the bike and along with his friend Avinash. While Avinash waited outside the Station building, Aslamuddin went inside the Police Station. Sub Inspector Mr. M.K. Ramesh asked Aslamuddin why he had come to the Station. Aslamuddin replied that he had come to collect his licence and pay the fine for riding pillion on a bike. The Sub Inspector, however, held Aslamuddin by his neck and pushed him into the Writer’s room inside the Police Station. The officer held Aslamuddin against the wall and elbowed him on his back. The officer elbowed Aslamuddin four times. Then the officer released his grip, and as Aslamuddin raised his head, the officer slapped Aslamuddin four to five times. Then the officer asked Aslamuddin to stand near the lock-up room entrance inside the Station.

At about 4 p.m., the police allowed Aslamuddin to call his family, to request them to come to the Police Station and take him on bail. But, before the family arrived, the police took Aslamuddin to Chavakkad Taluk Hospital. On the way to the hospital, the Sub Inspector threatened Aslamuddin, warning him that he should not mention the torture to the doctor.

However at the hospital, Aslamuddin informed the doctor in detail that he was tortured and how he was tortured at the Police Station. The Sub Inspector was not pleased with Aslamuddin’s conduct. At about 5 p.m., Aslamuddin was back at the Police Station and the officer immediately started slapping Aslamuddin for reporting torture to the doctor. In another 30-45 minutes, after the Sub Inspector had tortured Aslamuddin, the young man was finally allowed to go.

The next morning, Aslamuddin started coughing and spitting blood. Aslamuddin’s family, concerned about his health, admitted him in the Chavakkad Taluk Hospital. Aslamuddin received treatment for the next four days and was discharged from the hospital on the 10thApril 2015.

Cops ‘torture’ teen with cigarette butts

Nazar Abbas, Times of India, MORADABAD, 21 March 2015

[accessed 6 April 2015]

The two constables posted at Kathghar police station have allegedly detained an 18-year-old in police lock-up and tortured him by pressing cigarette butts on his body. He was allegedly made to suffer as he had refused to give them free cigarettes and gutka. The teen was booked for breach of peace.

Police Arrest, Torture 20 Christian Evangelists

Anto Akkara, World Watch Monitor, 5 March 2015

[accessed 6 April 2015]

"When we reached the place we were staying, they started abusing us and called the police again," Raj said. "The police came and took us to the police station in two jeeps. They made us stretch out our palms and beat us severely with wooden lathis," sticks often carried by Indian police. "Those who pulled their hands back after the first beating came in for more beatings. Many of us have bruises and blood clots on our palms six days later."

Political parties decry inhuman torture of youth by Mahoba police

WebIndia123, Lucknow, 27 Jan 2015

[accessed 28 March 2015]

Three policemen, including a sub-inspector, were suspended and a case lodged against them Tuesday for allegedly torturing a youth and injecting petrol in his private parts at a police outpost in Mahoba district’s City Kotwali police station.

The victim’s father, Daya Shankar Gupta, alleged that policemen had picked up his son — Dependra Gupta alias Vicky (26) — on January 22 and tortured him, forcing to return the money he had borrowed from his friend. The policemen also demanded money for his release, he added.

Human Rights Watch World Report 2015 - Events of 2014

Human Rights Watch, 29 January 2015 or

[accessed 18 March 2015]


IMPUNITY - Proposed police reforms have also languished even as police continue to commit human rights violations with impunity. These include arbitrary arrest and detention, torture, and extrajudicial killings. In several states, police are poorly trained and face huge caseloads.

No indictment despite city police facing repeated charges of custodial torture

Imran Gowhar, The Hindu, 25 August 2014

[accessed 16 September 2014]


JANUARY: The HSR Layout police detained Lokanath Bharathi, a software engineer, and allegedly tortured him for two days, following a complaint from his landlord

MARCH: Manjunath, a shopkeeper in K.G. Nagar, committed suicide after hewas detained and allegedly tortured by the police to extract information pertaining to a woman's murder near his shop

MAY: A jeweller was picked up by the Ashok Nagar police and allegedly tortured for two days suspecting that he had stolen a mobile phone of his customer

Teen tortured for ‘filming’ cops beating thief

Vijay V Singh, Times News Network (The Times of India) TNN, 8 Apr 2014

[accessed 9 April 2014]

Wajid said he was going to work at around 10.30am on March 31, when he saw a small crowd watching three plainclothes policemen beating up a handcuffed thief. Wajid said the cops felt he was trying to capture the action on his mobile, and assaulted him. Wajid said he told them he hadn't taken photos and requested them to check his mobile but they took him to Wadala Truck Terminal police station. In lock-up, Wajid claimed he was subjected to third-degree torture and fainted, but the torture continued as he regained consciousness. He said police also asked if he had any terror links. He was granted bail by the court on April 1.

Wajid, who suffered severe internal injuries to his private parts, was treated at the Sion Hospital OPD as he complained of being unable to pass urine, but had to be admitted after complications on April 6. His medical report said he sustained blunt trauma on his abdomen and chest, probably caused due to being beaten by belts and lathis. The report also said a tooth cleaning stick was inserted in his anus and he was unable to walk.

Report details Indian security forces use of torture against Kashmiri people

Wasantha Rupasinghe, World Socialist Web Site, 23 July 2019

[accessed 31 July 2019]

Titled Torture: Indian State’s Instrument of Control in Indian administered Jammu and Kashmir, the report is, in its own words, “the first ever comprehensive report on the phenomenon of torture in Jammu and Kashmir perpetrated by the Indian State from 1990 onwards.”

The 550-page document was published by the Association of Parents of Disappeared Persons (APDP) and the Jammu Kashmir Coalition of Civil Society (JKCCS). It gives a detailed account of cruelties practiced by Indian security forces in J&K, through an examination of 432 individuals who were subjected to various types of torture, including water-boarding, beatings with iron rods and leather belts, and electric shocks to the genitals.

'Still have nightmares of torture': Victims of Nerella caste violence seek justice

Dr. Nimeshika Jayachandran & Shilpa S Ranipeta, The News Minute, 5 December 2018

[accessed 8 December 2018]

On July 4, 2017, SI Ravinder from the crime branch, along with 10-15 policemen allegedly came to their houses and detained them without even telling them why they were being taken.

“They took us to some room where they stripped us down to our undergarments and chained us so we don’t run away. There was a window with railings, like the one you see here. They made us put our hands through that, tied our arms and weighed down our feet as well. They would lash us with rubber whips. One lash with that was enough for us to lose our senses. After a point, we couldn’t feel anything and eventually lose consciousness.  They would also spread our legs and tie our feet to a chain from the roof, gag us and continuously hit us, while splashing water on us. Our arms couldn’t reach our feet so there was nothing we could do. They would also lock our feet on a wooden slab, tie our hands behind the back, gag us, then stand on our thighs and continuously lash us. We couldn’t even scream. Just tears rolling down our eyes as we experienced excruciating pain,” Harish says as he recounts the horrors they went through.

They were also abused with caste-ist slurs. “They abused us saying ‘how dare you question the powerful men of Nerella. Don’t you know these are government lorries. Do you know these are TRS lorries?’ Only when they abused us did we come to know why we were detained,” Banaiah says.

Harish claims this happened for four days after which they were taken to a court, but were allegedly warned not to say anything or face death.

Testimonies of Torture Victims Lay Bare India's Claim of It 'Being Alien to Our Culture'

Gaurav Vivek Bhatnagar, The Wire, New Delhi, 29 October 2018

[accessed 29 October 2018]

One of these victims was Wahid Shaikh, an accused in the 7/11 or July 11, 2006 Mumbai train blasts case. Shaikh spoke about how the intensity of torture had gradually increased as he was abused, his religion was spoken ill of, he was beaten, kept naked, his legs were split wide and he was water-boarded and given electric shocks. All this, he said, to make him sign some confessional statements.

Similarly, Bandu Mashram, who was an accused in the Chandrapur Maoist case, said the police wanted him to confess that he was a Maoist sympathiser and so, under instructions from the Maharashtra police officer who was supervising the case, he used to be stripped and beaten. “I also brought this torture to the notice of the court, but no action was taken,” he said.

Firoz Deshmukh, an accused in the Aurangabad arms haul case, also testified about how he was made to walk on torn pieces of the Quran to break his spirit. He also mentioned how he knew of others who had been given electric shocks in their private parts.

Former chairperson of the Law Commission of India, Justice (Retd.) A.P. Shah, spoke about how “torture was now not only an integral part of policing culture, in terror offences it is a centrepiece”.

Justice Shah said the law has been designed this way and therefore police torture is endemic in India. He lamented that “some judges are convinced that without torture, evidence gathering and subsequent conviction is not possible. This acceptance of torture in India is an open secret.. As part of this, any such treatment meted out to certain communities is accepted as par for the course for justice and safety of the country.”

Kerala CM Pinarayi Vijayan warns of strict action against custodial torture

Express News Service, Malappuram, 6 May 2018

[accessed 6 May 2018]

Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan has lashed out at the police force and warned strong action against custodial torture by the police officers. While inaugurating the new DySP office at Tirur on Saturday, the Chief Minister said recent incidents have tarnished the image of the police force, referring to the controversial death of a youth under the police custody in the Varappuzha police station. Pinarayi added the Kerala police force is well known for its efficiency.

Claiming the state government will take strong and immediate action on the issue, he said murder cases have been registered against the police officers who are involved in the incident. “There will be no delay in taking action against the culprits behind the custodial torture,” he said.

Limbs lost to army torture, Handwara man loses faith in humanity

Asim Shah, Kashmir Reader, 26 November 2017

[accessed 26 November 2017]

For ten days, Nazir says, the roller torture was done at least for three hours daily.   In between the torture, the strong voice of a Major Multani would mark a brief pause.   “He would utter say the same line, while sipping tea behind me ‘Confess that you have links with militants and you have a gun to surrender’. After a brief pause, army men would again start torturing me,” Nazir said.

At the Langate army camp, Nazir says, torture didn’t stop, “it was rather “enhanced”   “Every day I was beaten with sticks. My legs were stretched in opposite directions to the extent that I was not able to breathe with pain. Electric shocks were given to my body including in private parts, a spiky iron rod was rolled over my legs and hot water spilled over my wounds,” he said.

“One day Major Multani pushed my left hand into the bukhari (fire stove) burning my four fingers completely.”   When his condition deteriorated and puss started oozing out from injuries, Nazir says, he was taken to Baramulla army hospital and from there to military hospital at Badamibagh, Srinagar where he remained under treatment for 12 days.   “I was treated but my condition was not improving, instead it worsened. Then I was thrown outside the camp during night on the road to die.

Pradhyumn murder: Conductor reaches home, family narrates tale of torture

Rediff News, 23 November 2017

[accessed 23 November 2017]

Bus conductor Ashok Kumar's family has alleged that the police authorities beat him up, hung him upside down, tortured him and even sedated him to confess to the murder of seven-year-old Pradhyumn Thakur at Gurugram's Ryan International School.

Hyderabad: Man sends torture wound clip from police station toilet

P Pavan, Ahmedabad Mirror, 20 Nov 2017

[accessed 20 November 2017]

Hyderabad police came under sharp criticism after a history-sheeter, allegedly detained illegally for three days, secretly sent a video showing ‘third degree’ torture wounds to family and friends through WhatsApp.

The video was apparently shot from inside a bathroom at S R Nagar police station on Saturday. In the video, which has since gone viral, the man, known as Tannu, claims police tortured him in an effort to force him to admit to a crime he had not committed. According to sources, he was picked up by the cops on Thursday night for allegedly drinking with friends at a public place. No sooner had the video gone viral than the police produced him before the magistrate.

School van staff accuses police of torture

Amritsar, Hindustan Times, 9 August 2014

[accessed 10 August 2014]

[accessed 27 July 2017]

In a complaint to the PHRO, van driver Harmesh Singh, helper Gurmeet Singh and another driver Gurinder Singh alleged, "As soon as the information came that the boy had been kidnapped, the police picked us and after initial questioning took us to Civil Lines. There we were tortured and subjected to electric shocks on private parts and ears. We were so badly beaten up that our legs got affected."

The three, claiming that they had nothing to do with the kidnapping, have demanded strict action against the policemen who tortured them. All three who are hospitalised underwent a medical examination after they approached the PHRO on Saturday.

Thane tribal boy dies of police 'torture'

Press Trust of India, Thane, 12 July 2014

[accessed 12 July 2014]

A 16-year-old tribal boy, who was allegedly tortured by some police personnel attached to a police station in Bhiwandi town in Thane district last month, died at a hospital today.   The victim, identified as Babu Thackeray, was allegedly beaten up by the constables, attached to Nizampura police station on the night of June 20.   He attempted suicide at his house in Mithpada locality the next day fearing that he would be subject to torture again, and his condition deteriorated since then.

The police let the boy go home only on the condition that he should report to the police station next morning at about 11 am for further probe, the FIR by his brother said.

2 Thane cops held for teen’s torture, victim still critical

Pradeep Gupta, Times News Network (The Times of India) TNN, BHIWANDI, 25 June 2014

[accessed 24 June 2014]

The Thane crime branch on Tuesday arrested the two constables of the Nizampura police station who allegedly tortured a 16-year-old labourer to force him to confess to stealing one kg gold. The condition of the victim, who is in ICU, continues to be critical.

The victim's family has demanded maximum punishment for the accused, who had beaten him up, leading to his suicide attempt.

Minor critical after cop torture

Thane, The Asian Age, 23 June 2014

[accessed 23 June 2014]

On June 20, at about 11 am, he was taken away by two plainclothes policemen to Nizampura police station in Bhiwandi.

According to a complaint by the teenager’s elder brother Chandra Thackeray, his brother Babu Sunil Thackeray (16) had injuries all over his body and he said that he was mercilessly tortured in custody by policemen, after being accused of stealing 2 kg of gold.

The police let the boy go home on the condition that he should report to the police station next morning at about 11 am for further probe, the FIR by his brother said.

However, the boy tried to hang himself, but neighbours saved his life. He has been now been admitted to the Sainath Hospital at Bhiwandi and is reported to be critical.

Odisha activist seeks NHRC action on cops in custodial torture case

Odisha Sun Times Bureau, Bhubaneswar, 16 June 2014

[accessed 17 June 2014]

The petitioner has alleged that after arresting them, the police took the two accused to Talcher police station and beat them mercilessly before taking them to Kishan Nagar police station in the midnight in a Scorpio vehicle.

On reaching Kishan Nagar police station, the accused were soundly thrashed by th epolicemen on duty as well as some people who were waiting near the police station. To escape from the brutality of the police, both the accused persons consumed phenyl which was kept inside the lockup, Das has alleged.

The activist said when the police noticed them consuming phenyl, it rushed them to the hospital at Raghunathpur at midnight. After the condition of both deteriorated, the doctor there referred them to SCB Medical College and Hospital at Cuttack.

Torture on schoolboy in police custody -- Probe finds allegations true

Jhalakathi. The Daily Star, 25 April 2014

[accessed 27 April 2014]

[accessed 27 July 2017]

On March 28 and 29, Russel, 15, a SSC examinee of Rajapur Pilot High School was brutally tortured in the police custody and he was forced to marry a girl.

Later, Russel was produced before a mobile court, led by Executive Magistrate Mahabuba Aktar, which sentenced him to six months' imprisonment.

Villagers allege ‘torture’ by AR in Manipur

Nagaland Post, Imphal, 16 March 2014

[accessed 17 March 2014]

Six villagers allegedly picked up by the Assam Rifles troops in a follow up action to PLA’s March 11 deadly ambush were released after subjected to torture. Security force has also reportedly prevented two severely wounded villagers from being hospitalized, a report received here said Sunday.

The report of alleged tortured of six villagers was reported days after a team of representatives of civil organizations led by Chandel Naga Peoples Organisation.

Prez award for cop facing torture trial

Deccan Chronicle, 15 Nov 2013

[accessed 16 Nov 2013]

It all started with Sunish, a CPM sympathizer, and friends at Malayinkeezhu blocking SI B Vinod as he tried to leave after his vehicle knocked down two bikers on August 19, 2001. Four days later Vinod and party allegedly assaulted Sunish. He was injured in the left eye, was in hospital for 32 days, out of which 28 days in remand.

Between this incident and another brutal attack on December 26, 2009, when his ribs were broken in custody, Sunish has been on the run, threatened, intimidated, set up in cases at different police stations and even mugged.

Sunish would still be a dubious character, as made out by the police, had it not been for a lady magistrate, who saw his plight and ordered that the police officers, who sought his remand, be booked for torture in 2009.

Torture in police custody: Youth gets Rs 50,000 compensation

A Subramani, Times News Network (The Times of India) TNN, Chennai, 21 Sept 2013

[accessed 21 Sept 2013]

[accessed 27 July 2017]

G Barathi had moved the high court saying a group of about eight police personnel barged into her house and picked up her son Arun in the middle of the night on June 16, 2012. According to her, he was kept in illegal confinement in the three police stations, apparently in connection with an unsolved theft case. By the time she came to know about his whereabouts, he had been lodged in the Saidapet sub-jail. She found injury and burn marks all over his body. On inquiry, her son gave her graphic description of how police hung him by a rope and beat him with lathi and rods, and subjected to other forms of third degree torture.

When the matter first came up for admission, Justice K Chandru had summoned the youth to the court and then ordered medical treatment. He also asked the principal district judge of Tiruvallur district judge to hold an inquiry and file a report. Medical report as well as the judicial inquest confirmed torture by police while Arun was in custody.

For 'torture to extract a confession', 3 cops face arrest

Santosh Singh, The Indian Express, Patna, 21 March 2013

[accessed 21 March 2013]

On the night of September 7, Rustum said, he was called again to the police station where all three officers were present. They allegedly wanted him to become a witness in a case involving the murder of Vishwanath Gupta, a fruit seller. The alleged torture began when he refused.

He alleged they inserted a funnel in the rectal opening and poured petrol through it. "After the inhuman act, Rustum became unconscious," reads the court order. "When he regained his senses, the same act was repeated by the three cops. The police officers threatened to kill him again."

On September 8, police took him to a magistrate to record his statement about his supposed involvement in the murder. The next day, when he narrated his story, the court ordered immediate treatment and asked a team of doctors for an injury report. The report found pilonidal sinus, a condition that can be caused by an injury, or a latent problem that may be precipitated by injury. In the gluteal region (around the buttocks) are bullous eruptions, which can be caused by exposure to corrosive chemicals such as petrol. Rustum remains on medication.

Man alleges torture by police, probe ordered

The Indian Express, New Delhi, 18 Jan 2013

[accessed 18 January 2013]

In his letter, Singh claimed that he was called to the police station at 5 pm on January 14, and asked to sign on papers he wasn’t allowed to read. Later, he was taken to another room where he was made to “lie down naked and tortured”. All the while, he claimed police personnel kept trying to extract a confession from him.

IAC volunteer alleges police torture

The Hindu, Bangalore, January 15, 2013

[accessed 16 January 2013]

THREATENING COOK - The police version is that Loknath Bharti (25), who was staying in a paying guest accommodation on Sarjapur Road, was picked up by the H.S.R. Layout police following a complaint by Ravinder Aneja, the owner of the PG accommodation. Mr. Aneja had alleged that Mr. Bharti threatened the cook at the PG accommodation with a knife during a quarrel.

The police on Saturday picked up Mr. Bharti and took him to the station where they allegedly beat him up. They later booked him for criminal intimidation and produced him before a magistrate at his house who remanded him in judicial custody on Saturday.

Human Rights Overview

Human Rights Watch

[accessed 16 January 2013]

The Indian government failed to hold rights violators accountable or to carry out effective policies to protect vulnerable communities. The government is yet to repeal the Armed Forces Special Powers Act, allowing soldiers to operate with impunity. It has not reformed the police despite allegations of torture and unlawful killings. The government adopted measures to compensate rape victims and no longer endorses the humiliating “finger” test to investigate rape cases. “Honor killings,” dowry deaths, and sexual violence remain problems. Internationally, India let opportunities pass to support independent investigations into human rights abuses abroad during its tenure at the UN Security Council and the Human Rights Council.

Police Abuse And Killings Of Street Children In India

Human Rights Watch Children's Rights Project, November 1996

[accessed 24 May 2011]

Indian street children are routinely detained illegally, beaten and tortured and sometimes killed by police. Several factors contribute to this phenomenon: police perceptions of street children, widespread corruption and a culture of police violence, the inadequacy and non-implementation of legal safeguards, and the level of impunity that law enforcement officials enjoy.


From an old article -- URL not available

Article was published sometime prior to 2015


Universal Periodic Review in May; the state did not accept recommendations to facilitate a visit by the UN Special Rapporteur on torture and by the Working Group on Arbitrary Detention, or to hold its security forces to account for human rights violations. Parliament amended the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act on financing terrorism but failed to bring it in line with international human rights standards.


Impunity for human rights violations remained pervasive, with no repeal of the Armed Forces Special Powers Act or the Disturbed Areas Act. Both Acts grant excessive powers to security forces in specified areas, and provide them with de facto impunity for alleged crimes. Protests against these laws were held in Jammu and Kashmir and the north-east, with concerns expressed by the UN Special Rapporteur on extrajudicial, summary or arbitrary executions during his visit to India in March, and by the UN Human Rights Council in September. Suspected perpetrators of enforced disappearances and extrajudicial executions in Assam (in 1998 and 2001), Manipur, Nagaland, Punjab (during 1984-1994) and other states, remained at large.

In January, the Supreme Court ordered new investigations into 22 alleged extrajudicial executions in Gujarat, mostly of Muslim youth, during 2003-2006.

In April, the National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) closed its inquiry into alleged unlawful killings and mass cremations by police during the Punjab conflict, without recommending criminal investigations. It awarded 279.4 million Indian rupees (US$5.78 million) in compensation to the families of 1,513 of the 2,097 dead. The findings of a Central Bureau of Investigation probe into the killings remained unpublished.

During 2007-2012, the NHRC distributed cash compensation to the families of 191 out of 1,671 people killed in the country, after determining they had been extrajudicially executed. Criminal investigations into the majority of such killings failed to make serious progress.


Widespread impunity prevailed for violations of international law in Kashmir, including unlawful killings, extrajudicial executions, torture and the enforced disappearance of thousands of people since 1989. The majority of cases of more than 100 youths shot dead by the police and other security forces during protests in the summer of 2010 were not fully investigated.

In December, a report by two Srinagar-based human rights organizations on 214 cases of enforced disappearance, torture, extrajudicial executions and other violations since 1989, alleged that the authorities were unwilling to investigate serious charges against 470 security personnel and 30 state-sponsored militia members.


Freedom House Country Report - Political Rights: 2   Civil Liberties: 3   Status: Free

2009 Edition

[accessed 16 January 2013]

LONG URL   ç 2009 Country Reports begin on Page 21

[accessed 12 May 2020]

Police often torture or abuse suspects to extract confessions or bribes. Custodial rape of female detainees continues to be a problem, as does routine abuse of ordinary prisoners, particularly minorities and members of the lower castes. The Asian Centre for Human Rights reported in 2008 that 7,468 people have died in custody over the past five years, nearly all as a result of torture. The National Human Rights Commission (NHRC), created in 1993, is headed by a retired Supreme Court judge and handles roughly 80,000 complaints each year. However, while it monitors abuses, initiates investigations, makes independent assessments, and conducts training sessions for the police and others, its recommendations are often not implemented and it has few enforcement powers. The commission also lacks jurisdiction over the armed forces, which severely hampers its effectiveness.

Security forces continue to be implicated in disappearances, extrajudicial killings, rape, torture, arbitrary detention, and destruction of homes, especially in the context of ongoing insurgencies in Kashmir, the tribal belt, and several northeastern states.

Human Rights Reports » 2005 Country Reports on Human Rights Practices

U.S. Dept of State Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor, March 8, 2006

[accessed 16 January 2013]

[accessed 4 July 2019]

TORTURE AND OTHER CRUEL, INHUMAN, OR DEGRADING TREATMENT OR PUNISHMENT – The law prohibits torture and generally did not allow for confessions extracted by force to be admissible in court; however, authorities often used torture during interrogations to extort money and as summary punishment.

The ACHR alleged that deaths in custody were a severe problem and that police regularly used torture. Because many alleged torture victims died in custody, and other victims were afraid to speak out, there were few firsthand accounts. Marks of torture, however, were often found on the bodies of deceased detainees. The prevalence of torture by police in detention facilities throughout the country was reflected in the number of deaths in police custody (see section 1.a.). Police and jailers typically assaulted new prisoners for money and personal articles. In addition, police commonly tortured detainees during custodial interrogation. Although police officers were subject to prosecution for such offenses, the government often failed to hold them accountable. According to Amnesty International (AI), torture usually took place during criminal investigations and following unlawful and arbitrary arrests.

In February the Jalandhar district police tortured and killed a dalit youth when he refused to confess to theft. In May in Tamil Nadu, police arrested Mariappan, a person belonging to a lower caste, for stealing valuables from the house where he was employed. Mariappan told media that police inflicted serious injuries on him while he was in their custody.

U.S. Library of Congress - Country Study 1996

Library of Congress Call Number DS407 .I4465 1996

[accessed 27 July 2017]

CIVIL LIBERTIES, HUMAN RIGHTS, AND THE ARMED FORCES – During the 1980s and 1990s, both international and domestic human rights groups asserted that human rights violations are rampant. The principal international organizations making these allegations are the International Commission of Jurists, Amnesty International, and Asia Watch. Two Indian counterparts are the People's Union for Civil Liberties and the People's United Democratic Front. Indian and foreign press reports have alleged that local police and paramilitary forces have engaged in rape, torture, and beatings of suspects in police custody. Numerous "militants" reportedly have simply disappeared in Jammu and Kashmir. On other occasions, especially in Punjab, security forces on various occasions allegedly captured insurgents and then shot them in staged "encounters" or "escapes." The government has either vigorously challenged these allegations or asserted that condign punishment had been meted out against offenders. The government has made efforts to blunt the barrage of domestic and foreign criticism. One such effort was the establishment of the five-member National Human Rights Commission in 1993 composed of senior retired judges.

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Cite this webpage as: Patt, Prof. Martin, "Torture by Police, Forced Disappearance & Other Ill Treatment in the early years of the 21st Century- India",, [accessed <date>]