Police Displayed Cowardice, Abetted Violence During Jat Quota Stir: Report

01/06/2016 7:41 PM IST | Updated 15/07/2016 8:27 AM IST
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Hindustan Times via Getty Images
ROHTAK, INDIA - FEBRUARY 19: The main gate of Rohtak range IGPs office set on fire by protesting Jat students, on February 19, 2016 in Rohtak, India. They blocked several squares of the city. Jat leaders earlier on Friday refused to withdraw their agitation till legislation is passed giving quota to the community under the Other Backward Classes (OBC) category even as the authorities in the worst-affected district suspended Internet and SMS services due to the stir which has disrupted rail and road traffic. The strike, into the sixth day, has crippled road and rail traffic across the state and shut down educational institutions in many places. (Photo by Manoj Dhaka/Hindustan Times via Getty Images)

A report submitted by the committee appointed to investigate the role of officers in the violence during the Jat quota stir that rocked Haryana in February has said the policemen displayed utter cowardice and inaction.

The Prakash Singh Committee has highlighted how the director general of police Yashpal Singal remained confined to Chandigarh and did not lead the force from the front to bring the situation, which killed 30 people and left more than 300 injured, under control, news reports said.

The state’s policemen, who were being chased by 100 youths with lathis ran away from rioters ‘as if they had seen a ghost’ in Rohtak district, the committee highlighted in its report.

In a proof of policemen’s cowardice, none of the police personnel opposed the rioters when they burnt down 29 police stations and check posts. "The SHO of Pillukhera police station (in Jind) also admitted that he along with his staff took shelter on the roof of the police station when the rioters attacked," the report says.

The report also goes on to highlight how the riots turned caste based when some officers refused to take action against the perpetrators.

"Officers at the district level, barring a few honorable exceptions, just did not rise to the occasion. They were either unequal to the daunting situation they faced or they could not mobilize the full strength of the officers and men under their command, some of whom either went missing or deserted their duties, the report said adding, “There was also a category of officers and men who, influenced by caste considerations, did not enforce the writ of law and allowed the rioters to have a free run. Most unfortunately, there were also some instances when the officers/men are suspected to have abetted the rioters.”

The report, made public by the Haryana government on Tuesday calls out for action against defaulting police officers.

"It is evident that DSP Satish Kumar and SHO Ajay Dhankar did not initiate any action against these miscreants. Exemplary disciplinary/departmental action should be taken against them so that it becomes a deterrent to all such officials who derelict from their duties and fail to protect the life and property of citizens," the report says.

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