|Biswas being taken to court on Tuesday. Picture by Chayan Majumdar
Behrampore, March 12: A Government Railway Police constable allegedly beat a passenger to death in front of his wife when he refused to pay a bribe of Rs 500 last night at Behrampore station, junior railway minister Adhir Chowdhury’s constituency.
The constable, Paritosh Biswas, was arrested hours after the incident and was today remanded in 14 days’ judicial custody.
Dilip Ghosh, a private tutor who had arrived from Bongaon in North 24-Parganas along with his wife, was waiting on the deserted platform number 1 around 1.30am to catch a morning bus to Tarapith in Birbhum when the constable, allegedly drunk, accused him of spending the night with an unknown woman and demanded Rs 500, Dilip’s wife Rama said.
She added: “When my husband refused, the constable abused him and started beating him up, refusing to believe that I was his wife. My husband fell to the ground but the constable did not stop.”
According to the 40-year-old woman, Biswas dragged Dilip to the tracks when he threatened to go to the station master’s office on the other platform.
“I tried to intervene but the constable pushed me away. There were hardly any people at the station. I could do nothing but shout. The constable fled,” Rama said.
Alerted by the shouts for help, people from the rickshaw stand rushed in and took Dilip to Behrampore General Hospital, 500m away. He was declared brought dead.
The couple did not have children.
The railway police said two constables were on duty last night. “The other constable was at the end of the other platform. He had no idea about this,” an officer said.
Rama returned to the GRP office at the station and lodged a complaint. The constable was easily identified as there were only two of them on duty last night.
The officer in charge of the GRP in Behrampore, Dipak Kumar Paik, also arrived at the station after coming to know of the incident last night, Rama said.
Minister Adhir Chowdhury could not be contacted.
Late in the evening, local Congress leaders arranged for a mini truck to take Dilip’s body back to Bongaon.
Local Congress leader Nepal Mondal today met Naskar and demanded exemplary punishment for the accused constable.
“We have told the railway superintendent of police that exemplary punishment should be given to the GRP constable. We have had complaints about him in the past. He often harasses businessmen and hawkers at night. If such things are repeated, we will launch a movement against the GRP in Behrampore,” Mondal said in the Congress bastion.
Asked about the complaint, Naskar said: “I will inquire into the matter and take necessary steps.”