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Dep ministers in mortuary case may face action

JOHOR BARU, 25 Jan 2009: Two deputy ministers are likely to face action if they are found to have broken the law in the incident where a crowd raided the mortuary of Serdang Hospital in Selangor on 20 Jan, said Home Minister Datuk Seri Syed Hamid Albar.  

Datuk K Devamany and Senator T Murugiah, both deputy ministers in the Prime Minister’s Department, were present at the mortuary when the crowd entered the premises to examine the body of car theft suspect A Kugan, who had died while in police custody.

“No minister or member of the administration is above the law and if you have committed an offence then you have to face the consequences,” Syed Hamid told reporters before attending a public forum on the Internal Security Act (ISA) here last night.

He also said that the 11 policemen being investigated for allegedly causing hurt to Kugan would not be spared action if they were found to have abused their powers.

Kugan, 22, who was detained on 15 Jan at the Taipan police station in Subang Jaya on suspicion of being involved in the theft of luxury cars in Sungai Chua, Kajang, died while being questioned on 20 Jan.

Selangor police chief Datuk Khalid Abu Bakar had said a postmortem found that Kugan had died due to fluid in his lungs. Kugan’s family, however, believed he had died of injuries and sought a second postmortem.

Attorney-General Tan Sri Abdul Gani Patail said later that Kugan’s death had been classified as murder.

On the forum, organised by a non-governmental organisation called The Patriot, in collaboration with the Home Ministry, Syed Hamid said the ministry was ready to hold similar forums throughout the country to enhance the public’s understanding of the ISA.

He said such forums were an important platform for the government to get input on the ISA from the people. — Bernama

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