Other States

Deaths caused by arms of protesters: U.P. DGP

O.P. Singh

O.P. Singh  

Uttar Pradesh Director-General of Police O.P. Singh has said that no one was killed in police firing and the deaths were due to gunshot injuries fired by non-prohibited weapons which are not used by the police.

Mr. Singh said the death toll so far in the State was 15.

Mr. Singh told The Hindu that the entire agitation in the State became “spontaneous and leaderless” and was “infiltrated by outsiders and anti-social elements”.

He said violence was reported from only “one-fourth of the State comprising 16 or 17 districts”.

He said that despite the Internet clampdown and prohibitory orders, a huge mobilisation was seen as people used offline mobile-based applications.

Fifteen people were killed in Uttar Pradesh in the past three days, the highest in the country so far, in clashes with the police as many people came out in protest against the Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) and the proposed National Register of Citizens (NRC).

Post-mortem report

“All these deaths took place due to gunshot injuries from non-prohibited weapons. The police do not use them. The post-mortem report shows that injuries were not inflicted by police weapons but show that countrymade pistols were used. It is not like that these agitators were without any weapons, they had illegal weapons and that is how we recovered 647 empty cartridges from these areas,” Mr. Singh said, adding that 62 police personnel also received bullet wounds.

He said children as young as 12 and a large number of women joined the agitation despite prohibitory orders.

“Despite our instructions and advisory these people assembled and resorted to violence. We did not show any forcible action on our part, we only wanted to chase them away...there were many women in the group and I myself moved some women to a safer zone,” he said.

Asked whether the police brutality as alleged by locals and visible on various video clips where policemen were seen firing would be investigated, Mr. Singh said, “In such a situation if there are lapses on the part of the police, we will certainly enquire but keep in mind we also sacrificed with injury to our men. They braved violent agitation, they faced violent mob with stone pelters but stuck to the ground. I compliment my policemen that they showed such restraint.”

He said the violence was supported by certain political parties and NGOs and they have evidence against them.

Alleges conspiracy

“The whole show was captured by people who did not believe in the democratic values. They wanted to create problems for the State and the administration; for them violence was important and it smacks of a conspiracy. It was given support by political parties, NGOs we have evidence. They played a prominent role. We are collecting evidence. We have definite information that Popular Front of India [PFI] was involved, we arrested few of their office- bearers,” he said.

While defending the police action in Aligarh Muslim University (AMU) on December 15, Mr. Singh said they entered the campus as they were called in by the university authorities.

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Printable version | Aug 9, 2020 11:44:50 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/other-states/deaths-caused-by-arms-of-protesters-up-dgp/article30374293.ece

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