“Reserving the liberty to the petitioner, the petition is disposed of considering the fact that all the 83 persons have been released. It is made clear that if any person is still under illegal detention of the local police, he/she be released forthwith.”
– Delhi High Court – Hindustan Times – August 11, 2015
Yes, we can now legally use the term ‘illegal’ for yet another midnight crackdown by the Delhi Police on ‘farmers’ who were protesting at Jantar Mantar and since the Delhi High Court thinks the ‘detention’ was illegal, we can safely say there was no provocation from the protesters’ side.
And since they were, the protesters, led by Yogendra Yadav, who had organized a day earlier a tractor protest at Delhi’s border, protesting peacefully, all we can say the Delhi Police once again acted in haste – and acted wrongly.
Yogendra Yadav and his supporters were arrested around 1 AM but Yadav, along with some protesters, were presented in the High Court only after 4 PM – the inordinate delay that irritated the court, like it did with many others.
Also, Yogendra Yadav’s tweets and photographs of the moment put the Delhi Police in the dock irrespective of whatever is the truth. Public, in Delhi and across the country, saw a manhandled and roughed up Yogendra Yadav in tweeted pictures. Then, the police did not allow Prashant Bhushan, a lawyer, to meet Yogendra Yadav and others while they were in police station.
Irrespective of the debates over intentions of Yogendra Yadav and Prashant Bhushan, irrespective of the intents of the ongoing protest rally – the Delhi Police crackdown was morally, politically and ‘socially’ wrong. When the tractor protest a day was okay, then a Hal Satyagraha (Hal=Ploughshare) a day later should have been no problem for the Delhi Police.
Instead of manhandling and detaining Yogendra Yadav and other protesters (as alleged), the police could have contained them easily at Jantar Mantar if at all they tried to move towards 7RCR – without their leader Yogendra Yadav. After all, they were just some 80 odd protesters.
Being in Delhi, the Delhi Police crushing a peaceful protest didn’t reflect well on the Ministry of Home Affairs, the controlling authority of the Delhi Police, and therefore, on the government of India, the BJP led National Progressive Alliance government.
Narendra Modi should be cautious of such developments and should try to rein in such movements because such developments add to negative public sentiments in a connected society.
©/IPR: Santosh Chaubey – https://santoshchaubey.wordpress.com/