Cops trying to frame 'innocent Hindus' in Jahangirpuri case, misleading court: VHP demands probe
New Delhi: Alleging that "some officers" of the Delhi Police are trying to implicate "innocent Hindus" in the Jahangirpuri violence case and also misleading the court, the VHP urged city Police Commissioner Rakesh Asthana on Monday to order a probe to identify such officers and take action against them.
It claimed that the organisers of a Hanuman Jayanti procession that was taken out in northwest Delhi's Jahangirpuri recently had given prior intimation about their programme to the local police stations but after clashes took place, police took an about turn and said no permission was given to the event.
"On April 15, we had intimated two local police stations in writing. We had also sent a list of shobhayatras (processions) that were to be taken out at 20 other locations in the city to the police commissioner through WhatsApp," Vishva Hindu Parishad (VHP) national spokesperson Vinod Bansal told PTI.
"But we did not get any information from the police about the cancellation of these processions, except one that was scheduled to be taken out at Shahdara on April 17 (a day after the Jahangirpuri violence)," Bansal said, adding, "We have the records and we can produce those before the court, if asked."
The VHP leader alleged that the violence broke out at Jahangirpuri during the Hanuman Jayanti procession on April 16 due to the "inaction of the police" and "some police officers are now trying to shift their sin of inaction on others".
"They are also misleading the court by changing their statements. There is a conspiracy to implicate innocent Hindus in the case," he said while asserting that "the VHP will not tolerate it".
The police commissioner must order a probe to identify these officers who are adamant on tarnishing his image and that of the Delhi Police and "oust them from the force", Bansal said.
Rejecting the bail pleas of some of the accused in the Jahangirpuri case, a Delhi court had recently observed that there was "utter failure" on the part of the city police in stopping the unauthorised Hanuman Jayanti procession that triggered communal clashes in the locality.
The court noted that the issue seemed to have been simply brushed aside by senior officers, and that the complicity, if any, of police personnel needed to be investigated.
"The liability on the part of the officials concerned needs to be fixed so that in the future, no such incident takes place and police are not complacent in preventing illegal activities," Additional Sessions Judge Gagandeep Singh said.
The court directed that a copy of its order, passed on May 7, be sent to the police commissioner for remedial compliance.
"It is fairly admitted...on behalf of the State that the last procession which was passing through, during which the unfortunate riots took place, was illegal, having no prior permission from police," the judge said.
The court said the sequence of events that took place at Jahangirpuri on April 16 and the role of the local administration in preventing the clashes and maintaining law and order needed to be looked into.
Latching onto the court's observation, Bansal hit out at the Delhi Police, claiming that "despite our intimation about the Hanuman Jayanti procession, they had deployed just three police personnel to maintain law and order in the midst of a crowd of about 1,000 people".
Noting that the police have claimed that no permission was given to the procession, he asked, "Then what were the policemen doing there while moving with the procession? Why did they not stop it at the starting point itself?"
Reacting to a similar accusation that surfaced on social media platforms, the police on Sunday said it had a "prime and very focussed responsibility of maintaining law and order in the area. If any situation erupts, police have to see to it that the situation does not worsen and that is the reason adequate policemen were there".
As a crowd had already gathered for a religious procession at Jahangirpuri, dispersing it forcibly could have led to law-and-order issues, it said.
"As soon as the clashes broke out, police controlled the situation in minimum possible time and ensured no casualty took place. Both the groups were immediately separated and as the stone and bottle-pelting started, police officials stood like a wall and dispersed the crowd instantly," it said.
Subsequently, a case was registered against the organisers for taking out the procession without permission, the investigation of which is under progress, the police added.
So far, 36 people, including three juveniles, have been held in connection with the Jahangirpuri clashes.