12/10/2016 8:45 AM IST | Updated 12/10/2016 10:07 AM IST

Man Arrested For Beef Comment On WhatsApp Dies In Police Custody: Report

Mukesh Gupta / Reuters
An Indian policeman is silhouetted against the setting sun as he stands guard on the banks of river Tawi ahead of India's Republic Day celebrations in Jammu January 23, 2012. India will celebrate its Republic Day on Thursday. REUTERS/Mukesh Gupta (INDIAN ADMINISTERED KASHMIR - Tags: MILITARY TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY)

Minhaj Ansari, a 22-year-old man from Jharkhand's Jamtara district, arrested for allegedly sharing a beef-related comment on WhatsApp that the police said had potential to spark communal tension, died in custody on Sunday, according to an Indian Exress report.

Ansari, a native of Dighari village under Narayanpur police station, allegedly posted the text on October 2, following which he was taken into custody. His family has alleged that he died of custodial torture.

When he was shifted to Dhanbad for treatment two days after his arrest, his family got into a scuffle with officer-in-charge Harish Pathak, and lodged an FIR against him, leading to his suspension.

The police maintain that Ansari was suffering from encephalitis, citing medical reports. An inquiry is on. Police cracked down on communally sensitive messages on WhatsApp ahead of Dussehra and Muharram.