In a major development, a group of over 150 eminent citizens, mostly retired government servants including ones from Judiciary, Civil and Police services, Armed Forces, Academia, Professionals and other intellectuals have issued an open letter accusing a group of fellow retired civil servants of selectively targeting the Yogi Adityanath government in Uttar Pradesh.
Backing a few of the major decisions taken by the state government over the last few months like the ones on zero-tolerance policy against crime and criminals, love jihad, cow vigilantism, the handling of Covid19 pandemic in Uttar Pradesh, etc., the Forum of Concerned Citizens, in its open letter slammed a particular section of retired civic servants, overtly posing as ‘non-political’, “for selectively choosing their political targets while following a covert political agenda, indulging in propaganda on the basis of inadequate or concocted facts, and a highly prejudiced mindset”.
Ex-civil servants had accused the Yogi government of eliminating members of the minority communities through police encounters
The trigger appeared to be the recent statement by the group of former civil servants of the All India and Central Services who accused the Yogi Adityanath government of eliminating members of the minority communities through police encounters. Alleging a “complete breakdown of governance” and “blatant violation of rule of law” in Uttar Pradesh, this set of 74 signatories had written to the CM to convey their “deep anguish at what we see happening in UP”.
Hitting out at these “handful of politically motivated, highly prejudiced and habitually complaining elements in the fraternity”, the 150 retired civil servants, including eminent names like Sanjeev Tripathi, former RAW chief, Nageswar Rao, the former director of CBI, Virendra Singh, the former commissioner of Income Tax, amongst others, called the allegations against the UP govt “serious, irresponsible and wholly misconceived”.
The Forum of Concerned Citizens presented its own statistics on such encounters to refute the claims made by the other set of retired civil servants.
The group said that a total of 8,367 police encounters took place in Uttar Pradesh between March 2017 (when Yogi Adityanath became the chief minister) and July 2021. In those encounters, a total of 18,025 criminals suffered injuries, out of which 3,246 were arrested and 140 lost their lives.
They further said that 115 out of 140 ‘petty criminals’ were carrying rewards and only 51 of them were from minority communities. The forum said that between March 1 and April 15, 2012, as many as 699 cases of murder, 263 rape cases and 249 incidents of loot have taken place in the state, asking those who have put forward the allegations if they are advocating status quo of such an anarchical situation.
Cow slaughter and vigilantism
Hitting out at this set of uninformed former public servants, the Forum of Concerned Citizens said that enough checks and balances are in place, from magisterial enquiry to NHRC, and the PUCL guidelines laid down by the Supreme Court. They also said that linking the National Security Act (NSA) exclusively to cow slaughter by giving wrong statistics of the year 2020 is highly prejudiced.
Crackdown on CAA and NRC agitators
Regarding the allegation of crushing dissent by suppressing ‘democratic protests’ during the CAA, NRC agitation by registering cases against ‘peaceful’ protestors, arrests and recoveries from people under the Recovery of Damages To Public and Private Property Ordinance 2020, the group of these 150 ex-civil servants said that it has been reiterated time and against that protester cannot be called ‘peaceful’ and ‘innocent’ if found indulging in ransacking and destruction of public property. Violators of laws do have to face the consequences, opined the members of the Forum of Concerned Citizens.
Yogi Government’s fight against Covid-19 undermined
They then urged the “highly prejudiced” group of former civil servants to refrain from damning the serving ones, who are fighting tooth and nail 24×7 to fight Covid-19, besides selectively denigrating the democratically elected state governments.
Reminding these “mindless” ex-civil servants of how the Yogi Government single-handedly sent “40 lakh migrant workers to their place of original residence in an unprecedented wave of reverse migration” and how it was able to bring the 2nd wave of COVID under control with the active Covid-19 caseload dipping to 1,554 on July 13, 2021, with only 96 fresh cases and 112 patients recovering in 24 hours. Test Positivity Rate has fallen to 0.9 % and Recovery Rate has increased up to 98.6%, said the Forum of Concerned Citizens.
It added: “Scoring Brownie Points flashing some random pictures of dead bodies floating in River Ganga is aimed at damning the hardworking and fearless Corona warriors on the field, who need to be motivated and encouraged to work harder. Instead of such building a disproportionately negative narrative, these whining former civil servants should have rather opted to work as very experienced volunteers in the crisis areas for supplementing manpower resources”.
It urged the “handful of politically motivated, highly prejudiced and habitually complaining elements in our fraternity” to refrain from damning the serving civil servants. It also warned them against selectively denigrating the democratically elected State Governments.
It said that in order to retain respect in civil society they should be viewed as people of intellectual integrity, grace and dignity rather than being identified as people pursuing a covert agenda through false narratives.
224 former IAS officers support anti-conversion law in UP
Pertinently, in the month of January this year too, about 224 former IAS officers have written to the Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath, extending their support to the recently enacted anti-conversion law in the State. The letter comes days after 104 ‘motivated’ ex-IAS officers demanded the withdrawal of the law, meant to contain the epidemic of grooming jihad.