U-turn on Krishnan’s second post-mortem

Teoh El Sen | January 12, 2011, FMT

In less than24 hours, the police have changed their mind and dashed the hopes of the family of M Krishnan.

PETALING JAYA: There will not be a second post-mortem on M Krishnan, the 37-year-old wireman who died in police custody last Friday, after all.

In less than 24 hours after police confirmed that they would be seeking a second post-mortem on Krishnan, the Attorney-General’s Chambers has advised a different course of action.

A top-level police source told FMT today: “On the advice of the A-G Chambers, the police will not be applying to the magistrate for a second post-mortem.”

“Otherwise, it will open up a floodgate. Our initial decision that the family should apply for a court order stands,” said the source.

He, however, added that police would still continue to investigate both the reports lodged by Krishnan’s wife and his jailmate, A Sargunan, who claimed that Krishnan was tortured to death by policemen.

Yesterday, Kuala Lumpur CID chief Senior Assistant Commissioner II Ku Chin Wah told FMT that the police would be applying to the court for a second post-mortem.

However, early today, FMT was informed of the change.

Contacted later, the lawyer for Krishnan’s family N Surendran, said: “I am shocked over the conduct of the Attorney-General (Abdul Gani Patail). He should by now order an investigation and give the case high priority. Instead of ensuring that there is justice, the AG is putting an obstacle in the family’s way.”

“The argument that it would open up the floodgates is weak and without merit. In the face of a public interest case, involving the death of a citizen in a lock-up, it is incumbent on the authorities to ensure that truth and justice prevail and action taken against the culprits. This cannot be done unless a second post-mortem is performed,” he said.

“This is all the more urgent after Sargunan, an eyewitness, lodged a report that Krishnan was tortured.

“The AG is abdicating his duties. Both the AG and police are in cahoots to cover up the case. By doing so, they are encouraging more cases of police brutality,” he added.

Surendran reiterated his call that the police immediately consent to a second post-mortem.

“After we have given the family hope yesterday, now this about-turn. I do not know how I am going to explain this to the family members,” he said.

Yesterday, Sargunan came forward and lodged a police report claiming that Krishnan was a victim of police brutality.

He said that he saw Krishnan being beaten up and trampled upon by policemen in boots. He also claimed Krishnan was denied medical assistance.

On Jan 3, Krishnan was arrested with several others in Taman Miharja, Cheras, on suspicion of possessing drugs.

Last Friday, Krishnan, a father of six children, was found dead at the Bukit Jalil police station lockup. According to the police, initial post-mortem results showed the death was related to an ulcer.

But Krishnan’s family claimed there were bruises all over his back, an open cut wound on his right abdomen, and a bruise on his right eye.