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Post-mortem report confirms Minhaj Ansari was tortured, no mention of encephalitis as officials claim

By Amit Kumar, Twocircles.net

Mohammed Ilyas has barely had a moment to sleep in the past ten days. Between consoling family members, his job and running from pillar to post to seek justice for the death of his family member Minhaj Ansari, Ilyas has been left tired, sick and wishing this is all a dream that he wakes out of one day.

Until October 3, Ilyas was a regular person with a family to take care of in Jamtara. But ever since the custodial death of Minhaj Ansari, Ilyas has been running around helpless, trying to fathom what happened. “He was a quiet boy with a child and a wife…we still cannot believe what has happened. I have lost count of how many vehicles full of people, camera crew and reporters have come to our house for the past week. The media has helped, but sometimes it seems they just want to make an exciting story out of it,” he told Twocircles.net over phone.

Ilyas knows the road to justice is a long, and treacherous one; he says that he is overwhelmed by the list of things that they have to do. “We received Rs 2 lakh from the district administration..but how will that help the family of Minhaj for the rest of their lives? Who will arrange to take care of the child? Insaf to choriye, abhi tak post-mortem report nahi mila hai,” he says, on the verge of tears.

It was on Thursday evening, that some friends of Ilyas finally managed to get hold of the post-mortem report, and the report has bust all claims made by the administration that the death of Ansari was due to medical negligence.

The post-mortem report, dated October 14 points out that the victim had injuries in his sole, there was blood oozing from his mouth and he had injuries in his stomach, large intestine and back. “The mucus of stomach was highly congested…it was layered with blood, reddish brown in colour. The stomach was empty…2/3rd of the small intestine was filled with blood,” the report reads. It further adds, “Above noted injuries are anti-mortem caused by hard and blunt substances…Cause of death is haemorrhage and shock.”


But most worryingly for the administration, the word “encephalitis” is not even mentioned in the post-mortem report, which shows that the administration’s attempt to divert the death as a case of medical issue stands exposed.


Speaking with Twocircles.net, a medical practitioner who assessed the report ruled out all chances of encephalitis. “The report says that injuries are attributed to hard and blunt substances. There is no way this was due to encephalitis, which is caused due to a bacterial or a viral infection. And the fact that the report does not even mention it makes it clear that some kind of torture was surely involved,” the doctor said.


Also, one other person who was arrested with Ansari, Shahban, spoke with the Association for Protection of Civil Rights and confirmed the abuse and torture that they suffered. “Initially, they (the police) picked two of us (him and one other person) in plain clothes. Then they brought Minhaj and all three of us were beaten. They then took Minhaj to another room and beat him mercilessly. When we were released in the morning, we could see that Minhaj was lying down, unconscious,” he told APCR.

The family of Ansari has also been extremely disappointed with the response of the local MLA Irfan Ansari. “He made so many promises to us on the day of Minhaj’s burial; and after that day he hasn’t even picked our phone. As our MLA and a member of our community, are we asking for too much if we ask him to help us get justice?” asked Ilyas. Despite repeated attempts, Twocircles.net has not been able to contact Ahmed for comments.

Will protest outside Collector’s office, demand justice

Irked by the lack of any progress over the custodial death of Ansari, Mohammed Sirajuddin, a local activist and a friend of Ansari said that they would be holding demonstrations outside the office of the District Collector.

“When we refused to bury Minhaj’s body, the police threatened us saying it would turn into a Hindu-Muslim conflict. Then, they tried to fool us by saying that he had died because of encephalitis. Now the post-mortem report has ruled out that also. Will they charge the accused now? Merely suspending the officer is no solution,” he said. He added that the entire family of Ansari, including his parents, wife and relatives would gherao the Collector’s office and demand action, including a case under Section 302 against Harish Pathak and others who killed Ansari.

According to Ilyas, he has also been saddened by the lack of support from local Muslim organisations. “People from Jama’t-e-Islami had come to meet, but we have not got any assurances from them regarding the support they will extend. All I wish is that the wife and child of Ansari are not left helpless. But politics again has overtaken human sentiments,” he added.