The incident was caught on camera and the video has gone viral on social media.
In the video, the policeman named Periyasamy can be seen beating a man, Murugesan, despite cries and pleas from the victim’s friends. The incident took place at the Pappinaickaenpatti check-post under the Yethapur station limited in the Salem district.
The victim had reportedly gone with his friends to the nearby Kallakurichi district to purchase liquor. When stopped by the cops, the farmer who was in an inebriated state was said to have argued with the cops.
In the clip of the brutal attack, Murugesan and his friends are seen pleading with the policeman, who continued to thrash the man indiscriminately, while other cops in the vicinity looked on. Apparently, the policeman stopped raining blows with the cane only after the victim fell unconscious.
According to the police, Periyasamy has been arrested. The issue was also raised in the Assembly by Leader of Opposition Edappadi K Palaniswami, to which Chief Minister Stalin assured action and said an investigation was underway.
Owing to the pandemic, 11 districts of Tamil Nadu including Salem are still under restrictions, which means that liquor shops are shut there. Owing to such restrictions, people from such districts tend to go to some adjoining districts where the state-run liquor shops are open, despite the guidelines preventing them from doing so.
The incident of police brutality is reminiscent of the Jayaraj-Bennix custodial death case that took place in Tuticorin in June 2020.