In a shocking instance of violence, a 72-year-old man was beaten up and later died due to injuries for admonishing a motorcyclist for driving dangerously and honking loudly in Kuniyamuthur, Coimbatore. Ponusamy, from Kamaraj Puram, Kuniyamthur was the head of the Covai Therrku Maavatta Meenavar Anni — a fishermen's wing of the BJP.
Ponusamy was in the habit of taking a walk along the road near his home in the mornings and evenings. At 7:45 pm on July 29, while he was out on his usual walk, he noticed a young motorcyclist heading down the same road he was on. Ponusamy moved to the side of the road to let the vehicle pass. The motorcyclist then allegedly honked loudly and drove as if to crash into Ponusamy. Ponusamy is believed to have admonished the youth for creating a ruckus and driving in an intimidating manner, especially when he had given way for the vehicle to pass.
The young man, identified as Siva, allegedly infuriated by the admonishment is said to have got off his motorcycle and slapped Ponusamy, who was knocked to the ground from the blow. Siva allegedly went on to attack Ponusamy with a log lying by the roadside, grievously injuring him. The victim’s son, Marudhachalam, arrived at the scene hearing his father’s cries. Siva allegedly attacked the son too, made death threats to him and fled the scene. Ponusamy was rushed to a nearby hospital where he received emergency care.
Marudhachalam lodged a complaint at the Podanur police station. Ponusamy succumbed to his injuries on the morning of 30 July.
The Podanur police say that they are looking for the accused. It was Ponusamy’s son who has identified the accused as Siva, a young man from their neighbourhood. Siva is said to have been accompanied by his wife on his motorcycle at the time of the incident.
The nearby Podanur police sub-inspector told TNM that they themselves do not have photos of either the victim or the accused. “The victim was intubated at the hospital so we do not have a photo of him. The accused has fled. We only have his name, but no photo. We are still looking for him.” The SI also added that Siva is perhaps 25-27 years old.