The Kerala police have suspended and arrested a civil police officer (CPO) named Reneez of Nawas Manzil, Vattappally, in Alappuzha. His wife Nejla (27) killed their two children and committed suicide, and Reneez is accused of sexual assault, dowry harassment, involuntary manslaughter, and incitement to suicide.
On May 10, Nejla strangled their 18-month-old son Tipu Sultan with a shawl and drowned their five-year-old daughter Malala in a water-filled bucket before hanging herself. Reneez was on duty at the Alappuzha medical college hospital when the incident happened. The incident led to severe findings against Reneez.
The couple married eight years ago and lived in the police quarters for the past four years. Nejla was from Kollam, and her parents gave 40 Sovereigns of gold, Rs. 10 lakhs, and a motorcycle as dowry. Reneez sent Najla back home, demanding more dowry. Her family paid Rs 20 lakh. Reneez forbade Nejla from calling anyone on her mobile phone.
When he left for duty, Nejla was locked in a room, and she was reportedly not allowed to interact with the outside world. The Kerala police officer had close relationships with many women and constantly coerced Nejla to let him marry another woman who was a relative. When Nejla and her family opposed it, Reneez reminded them that it was allowed in Islam. According to the remand report, Reneez’s mental and physical abuse led the victim to commit suicide.
The incident came to light when Reneez’s call home went unanswered. He alerted his neighbors, who found the door locked from inside, and contacted the fire force. Fire force personnel led by station officer T B Venukuttan forced open the door in Reneez’s presence and found the mother and Tipu dead. Reneez picked up Malala from the bucket, but she died when the ambulance arrived.
A neighbor living in the next block told the police that a woman had visited their quarters a day before Nejla took the extreme step. The victim’s sister Nefla said that Reneez had assaulted her sister after the woman’s visit. Nefla said they had tried to register several domestic violence complaints against Reneez in the past, but local police ‘compromised’ them all.
After the filicide/ suicide, district police chief G Jayadev said they had registered a case of unnatural death. Nefla added that the couple used to quarrel frequently and that Reneez was an animal who possessed a dual personality and believed in black magic. Bizarrely, Reneez used to torture Nejla saying that her parents used black magic and killed his parents. Both his parents are dead, and he has a sister.
Nefla said that their father is dead too. As Nejla couldn’t bear the mental torture, she asked her to come home with her children. The victim refused to do so since Reneez threatened to hurt her mother and sister if she abandoned him.
The victim’s family knew about the policeman’s extra-marital relationship when Nejla was pregnant with their second baby. Immediately after Malala was born, Reneez tried to assault Nejla sexually and assaulted her violently when she refused. He allegedly beat Nejla’s mother, who was there and sent her out of the house.
The family tried to complain, but the police promptly compromised that assault. Nejla said they would go ahead with legal proceedings against Reneez. There are allegations that Alappuzha police tried their best to save Reneez. Reneez began assaulting his wife even before joining the police service. The victim’s relatives alleged that Reneez’s sister encouraged him to divorce Nejla and marry their relative. She, too, mentally tortured the victim. His police job appears to have emboldened him even more.