International news: trucker bitten after refusing to pay bribe

| 4/3/2002

According to a Reuters article, two policemen were suspended in the eastern Indian city of Calcutta after one of them allegedly bit the hand of a truckdriver who refused to pay a bribe.

The incident occurred Sunday after two cops pulled the trucker over for a routine inspection. "It seems the police vehicle driver was desperate to extract money from the truckdriver," Deputy Commissioner of Calcutta Police Harman Prit Singh told Reuters. "The policeman went berserk when the truckdriver didn't cooperate and they got into a scuffle. That's when the truckdriver's hand was bitten." Police officers, who are often poorly paid, commonly ask for bribes in exchange for tearing up tickets to supplement income, Reuters reported. The trucker later complained to senior police officials that the cop bit his hand, Reuters reported. Police could not say whether the bite was serious.

Singh told Reuters the other officer was suspended for failure to restrain his partner. "We're investigating the whole incident," said Singh.