Remembering Kugan and Teoh Beng Hock

It is a very painful process to come to terms with the death of a loved one – worse still, if the person died under strange circumstances such as in the case of A. Kugan and Teoh Beng Hock. My heart goes out to their bereaved family members and loved ones for the journey to recovery must certainly be a long, winding, rocky and painful one indeed. They cannot forget, neither can we.











The Malaysian Insider reported HERE that the family of A.Kugan are deeply disappointed that the man accused of causing his death was acquitted by the Petaling Jaya Session Court this morning after Judge Aslam Zainuddin found constable V.Navindran not guilty of causing grievous hurt to the 23-year old, since the prosecution failed to establish a prima facie case. Kugan’s aunt, Renuka Subramaniam, told reporters that the family is still seeking for justice over his death.

In FMT, Kugan’s lawyer N. Surendran urged the government to set up a Royal Commission of Inquiry to investigate the 21-year-old youth’s death in police custody two years ago.

Do visit Nat’s blog HERE to see the video and graphic pictures that will remind us of how he died so tragically. Zedeck Siew of TNG also did a very good piece on this issue HERE.

On January 19th, TMI reported that the revision of the open verdict in the Teoh Beng Hock inquest has been fixed to be heard at the High Court here on January 31.

On January 26th, TMI reported that the Najib administration bowed to widespread pressure and expanded today the terms of reference of a royal panel to probe how Teoh Beng Hock plunged to his death in 2009 following an overnight interrogation by anti-graft investigators in Shah Alam. Then, Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak also announced today the members of the Royal Commission of Inquiry which will be headed by Federal Court judge Tan Sri James Foong. Besides looking into how the 30-year-old DAP political aide died, the panel will also probe the investigation procedures of the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC).

Let’s be realistic. In almost every profession, one can encounter ethical problems; after all, we are only human. However, where law enforcement officers are concerned, I believe that it is only right that citizens expect them to conform to recognized ethical standards. Obviously, any layman would expect a police personnel to uphold the law firmly and fairly, protect, help and reassure the community, pursue and bring to justice those who break the law and to do all things with integrity, common sense and sound judgement.

Coming from a modern society, it is natural that we have high expectations from the police and this includes the ability to be assertive in time of danger, to be restrained in potentially explosive situations, to be fair in the resolution of disputes and to be courteous to all persons while remaining fair, humane and secure in their judgements.

But now, how will the average citizen view the police force with the disclosure of some facts and figures? A walk down memory lane…

* According to Kapar MP S Manickavasagam, from the year 2000 to 2008, there have been more than 80 cases of reported deaths in police custody but nothing has been done to address this. He also claimed that more than seven police officers are involved in Kugan’s case(as reported in Malaysiakini here or in Aliran HERE.

*An independent post-mortem report has revealed that deceased 22-year-old police detainee Kugan Ananthan had endured severe beatings and was also starved during his incarceration.

* The post-mortem conducted by a Universiti Hospital pathologist who was commissioned by the family of the deceased found that the car theft suspect had died of kidney failure due to the assault.