Just one day after Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak launched the National Human Rights Action Plan (NHRAP), a teenager has lodged a complaint with the Human Rights Commission of Malaysia alleging police brutality.
Jayeendiran Kumaresan, 18, accompanied by lawyer G Sivamalar and his family members, handed over the complaint to Suhakam commissioner Jerald Joseph at its headquarters in Kuala Lumpur this morning.
According to Sivamalar, Jayeendiran and his father A Kumaresan were arrested and remanded for eight days from last Nov 7 at the Kuala Selangor police station lock-up in connection with an investigation into a robbery case.
Both were later released without any charges, said Sivamalar, who is also PKR Women's Wing vice-chairperson, in a statement.
"It was during this period of eight days in police custody that Jayeendiran alleges he was tortured and beaten with a rubber hose for more than an hour by two policemen in plainclothes and unlawfully forced into making a confession after police allegedly threatened to beat his father.
"When he complained of pain from the injuries and of being dehydrated, Jayeendiran further alleged, one officer violently kicked him while the other forcefully poured water from a toilet bowl into his nostrils," Sivamalar said.
"Despite lodging a police report on Nov 27 last year and calling for Bukit Aman to swiftly investigate Jayeendiran's accounts of physical and mental torture in custody, it is disappointing that we are yet to hear of any concrete step being taken by the police to bring his alleged perpetrators to justice," she added.
She also pointed out that there were rampant human rights abuses under the present administration and these had been condemned by local and international NGOs, lawyers, opposition politicians and members of the public.
"If the prime minister truly believes in his human rights action plan, then he must prove his sincerity and immediately implement the Independent Police Complaints and Misconduct Commission (IPCMC), failing which his promises will appear nothing more than another election gimmick," Sivamalar said.
In launching the NHRAP yesterday, Najib said the move demonstrated Malaysia’s commitment to guarantee and safeguard human rights in the country.
Human rights groups and other stakeholders have repeatedly called on the government to set up the IPCMC to exclusively address allegations of wrongdoing by and within the police force.
The government responded by setting-up the Enforcement Agency Integrity Commission (EAIC) to address complaints against all 21 government enforcement authorities.
However, these authorities are not bound by any decision of the EAIC.