Mumbai: Peck on child's face proves fatal for youth

Gripped by coronavirus frenzy, the neighbours of a 35-year-old man thrashed him to death in Bhandup last week because they saw him hold their 4-year-old niece and plant a peck on her cheek, in utter disregard of social distancing norms. The irate uncles confronted him and after a heated argument, rained kicks and blows on him till he fell unconscious. He was rushed to a nearby hospital, where he was declared dead before admission.

Shortly after, Bhandup Police arrested the two brothers, Nikhil Dhumal, 30, and Adarsh Dhumal, 25, on charges of murder.The incident took place last Wednesday, when the four-year-old girl was playing in the lane by Raghunath Jadhav Chawl in Ganesh Nagar, Bhandup. Around 9.30pm, her neighbour Krishna Kushalkar saw her playing and lifting her up, allegedly kissed her on the cheek, the police said. His gesture of affection however, did not go down well with her two uncles, who witnessed the scene. According to police, Kushalkar had no bad intentions and his act was just an impulsive gesture of affection.

However, Adarsh and Nikhil were enraged and confronted Kushalkar and questioned how he could have gone so close to the child in the midst of the pandemic. Soon, an argument broke out between them which turned violent. The duo began pummeling Kushalkar and to save himself, he ran inside his house. However, the two accused followed him there and continued to assault him. They reportedly punched and kicked him in the head, chest and back. Eventually, Kushalkar lost consciousness and had to be rushed to the nearby hospital where he was declared dead before admission, said police.

"We have arrested the two under sections 302 (murder) and 34 (common intention) of the Indian Penal Code, " said Senior Inspector Sham Shinde of Bhandup police station.

The initial post mortem report suggests that the victim died of internal bleeding. However, his visceral samples have been preserved and sent for chemical analysis, to ascertain the exact cause of death, said a police officer.

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Free Press Journal