Delhi Police brutality sparks outrage

Videos show demonstrators being lathicharged, kicked and thrown to the ground

Updated - November 17, 2021 02:12 am IST

Published - February 02, 2016 07:19 am IST - New Delhi:

The Delhi Police drew flak on Monday after videos showing them brutally assaulting protesting students went viral on social networking sites.

Students protesting against the events leading to the suicide of scholar Rohith Vemula were marching towards the RSS headquarters in Central Delhi’s Jhandewalan on Saturday. They had broken through a layer of barricades when police decided to take them on physically.

Students alleged that the policemen did not discriminate between male and female protesters, as they swirled their lathis and punched them.

But the sharpest reactions were reserved for some men in plainclothes, alleged to be RSS workers, who joined in the assault. One video actually showed policemen allowing these elements to take over from them as they turned their attention to other protesters.

RSS spokesperson Rajeev Tuli, however, dismissed the allegation.

The uproar over the videos, though, led to the Delhi Police Commissioner B.S. Bassi ordering a probe into the allegations. He insisted that he had not seen the videos though most news channels ran them through the day.

Stopped from marching towards the RSS headquarters, the 200-odd student activists from JNU, DU, Jamia and a few other varsities broke through the first level of barricades before drawing the police’s wrath.

Some videos circulating on the social media showed students abusing the policemen, the government and Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

The students were lathicharged, kicked, pulled by their hair and thrown to the ground by the police. Some female students came forward to claim they were beaten up by policemen as policewomen, very few in numbers, watched.

Amidst all this, political parties led by the AAP, made the most of the incident.

Kejriwal condemns police

Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal went on to call the Delhi Police the “private army” of the BJP and the RSS out to “terrorise” anyone opposing them.

Mr. Kejriwal, who is in Bengaluru for his naturopathy treatment, tweeted: “Del pol being used by BJP/RSS as their pvt army to terrorize n teach lesson to anyone opposing BJP/RSS. I strongly condemn attck on students [sic].”

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