Delhi: Farmers Face Nails and Barricades, But Muslim Hate Slogans Have Field Day in Jantar Mantar
Image Courtesy: Scroll
New Delhi: Hundreds of farmers have been sitting in peaceful protests against the three farm laws the on the borders for months now, braving cold, hot and weather. Why? Because they were been allowed to enter Delhi to protest and the authorities dug in nails on roads, put up barricades , dug roads to stop them. When they tried, they were tear-gassed and lathi-charged.
Contrast this with what happened in Delhi’s Jantar Mantar on Sunday. Hundreds of people owing allegiance to Hindutva organisations congregated in the heart of Delhi, openly sprayed communal poison in the air by shouting hateful and inflammatory slogans against Muslim community, openely calling for their annihilation. All this was done under the banner of ‘Bharat Jodo Movement’, among whose leaders was Supreme Court lawyer and former Delhi BJP spokesperson, Ashwini Upadhyay.
There was no attempt to stop them, no barricades, no tear-gassing, no riot police, no lathi-charge to ‘disperse’ them. These people were having a field day, as per vidoes going viral on social media. Where was the Delhi Police? At least if not for anything else, at least the COVID guidelines should have prompted some action.
According to a report inIndian Express,a senior police officer said they had refused permission for such a protest’
“We refused permission after informing them about DDMA guidelines (which do not allow for gatherings in view of the Covid protocol), and later we got to know that Ashwini Upadhyay was looking for an indoor venue. Police arrangements were in place and we thought around 50 people would come, but suddenly many people in small groups started gathering. They were protesting peacefully, but started raising slogans when they were dispersing,” the police officer has been wuoted as saying byIndian Express.
When asked about the purported videos, DCP (New Delhi district) Deepak Yadav told IE, “We are verifying all the video clips.” He refused to comment on how such a large number of people managed to gather at Jantar Mantar.
Wonder of wonders, a senior police officer from the Intelligence Wing told the newspaper that Delhi Police’s Special Branch had informed the New Delhi district about the event and that people were likely to turn up in large numbers.
So, doesn’t the Delhi Police, which works right under the Union Home Ministry, need to answer these questions? At least now, new Delhi Police chief Rakesh Asthana, who has joined recently, needs to be answerable to the people of Delhi, which has still not forgotten the horrendous communal violence in Northeast Delhi 2018, leading to the death of 54 persons and immense destruction of property.
After a social media storm, where people questioned how no action was taken, whereas the Delhi Police acted swiftly to arrest and jail students and activist critical of the government in a jiffy, for alleged ‘inflammatory’ speeches, the police on Monday registered an FIR against ‘unknown persons’, accordingtoIndian Express.
DCP (New Delhi district) Deepak Yadav said, “A case has been registered under relevant sections of law. The investigation is in progress.”
“The FIR has been registered under Sections 153-A (promoting enmity between different groups), against the unknown persons a day after “inflammatory, anti-Muslim slogans” were allegedly raised at Jantar Mantaron Sunday during a march “against Colonial-era laws” in the country,” said the newspaper report.
Ironically, the divisive and communal slogans at the ‘Bharat Jodo Movement’ were raised at a meeting that claimed to be a protest against colonial laws.
“There was a protest against colonial laws used to suppress Indians by the British, which still exist. We were there to protest against those laws and for a Uniform Civil Code because our demand was that there should be one rule in one country,” said Shipra Srivastava, media in-charge of Bharat Jodo Movement told IE, denying that “there was no such (inflammatory) slogan in my knowledge… there were 5,000 people and if five-six people in some corner would be shouting such slogans, then we would disassociate ourselves from them”.
While the blood-curdling purported videos speak for themselves, the citizens of Delhi deserve to get some answers and assurance from Delhi Police regarding maintaining peace and harmony in the country’s capital city. The Delhi government, too, has not reacted yet.
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