Surat: The Surat police on Monday booked its own Sub-Inspector NS Patel on charge of murdering a 25-year-old Dalit man, who died under mysterious circumstances.

Mahendra Makwana was reportedly picked up by a police team during a raid at a gambling den in the city’s Dabholi area.

Police claimed Makwana tried to escape from its custody but during the chase, he fell due to an alleged epileptic attack and died on the spot.

Enraged locals said Makwana died of severe police beating since he was a Dalit. A mob then attacked Patel with sticks and stones. He has been hospitalised.

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A case was registered for thrashing a policeman on duty, further infuriating the family of Makwana and other community members.

Though police continued to maintain that the man fell unconscious while escaping and died, it registered a first information report against Patel on the charge of murder and under other provisions of the law related to prevention of atrocities against the Dalits.

Meanwhile, doctors at a local hospital who conducted an autopsy on Makwana’s body said they did not come upon any conclusive evidence but they did find injury marks on his leg.

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