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Gujarat DGP orders probe into the incident of cops flogging Islamists in public for attack on garba event

A group named Minority Coordination Committee (MCC) served legal notices on the Chief Secretary and the Director General of Police (DGP) over the matter

On Friday, the Gujarat police chief ordered an investigation into an incident in which cops were allegedly captured on camera openly flogging a few members of the Muslim community who hurled stones at a Garba event in the Kheda district. This is after a voluntary group named Minority Coordination Committee (MCC) served legal notices on the Chief Secretary and the Director General of Police (DGP) over the matter.

According to the reports, the incident happened on October 3 in Undhela village of Kheda district when a mob of Islamists attacked a Garba event in the village. The Garba event was organized outside a temple in the chowk which is also very close to a madarsa. The Islamists objected to the Garba music being played on the loudspeaker in the chowk near the madarsa and then attacked the participants of the Garba event.

Seven persons including a policeman were injured in the attack which was launched by the Islamists. The Islamists hurled stones and attacked the Garba dance participants and organisers. The next day, the Police identified and arrested around 13 Islamists who disrupted the event and flogged them in the chowk, the video of which went viral over the internet.

The viral video recordings showed three individuals being escorted out of a police vehicle near the event site before being carried to an electric pole and restrained against it by a police officer. Another officer could be seen beating them with a baton below the waist.

The Police requested the remand of three of the 13 accused apprehended for stone pelting. On Wednesday, a court in Kheda remanded them to two days in police custody, while ten others have been sent to judicial custody.

DGP Ashish Bhatia took cognizance of the viral videos and ordered a probe into the incident. He has asked Kapadvanj Deputy Superintendent of Police V N Solanki to conduct an inquiry into the matter and submit a report at the earliest. “Late last night, I was given the responsibility of conducting the inquiry into the incident. I will submit my report as soon as possible”, Solanki confirmed.

Earlier, the Police had filed a complaint against around 150 persons who attacked the group performing Garba with stones. The Police said that the event was organized by the sarpanch (head) of Undhela village and that the Islamist crowd sought to interrupt it since it was being hosted at a temple which is near a mosque.

The probe was reportedly ordered after a voluntary organization in Gujarat named Minority Coordination Committee (MCC) issued legal notices to Chief Secretary and the DGP complaining over the flogging incident. “The state government should take appropriate and suitable departmental, disciplinary, punitive and criminal action against the erring police officials forthwith who have openly violated all rights of the victims by way of flogging”, Convenor of the Minority Coordination Committee (MCC) Mujahid Nafees said in the notice.

The chowk in which the Islamist were flogged by the Police (Source- The Print)

“Those who were flogged belong to the minority Muslim community. Such open and brazen violation is not only against the protected right under Article 21 but against the whole constitutional spirit of a civilized society”, the organization added. It also said that the flogging incident could in no way be justified by the stone-pelting incident that happened earlier. “There is no section in any police manual or the Indian Penal Code that allows police to indiscriminately assault citizens”, the outfit stated.

Meanwhile, one of the victims of the stone pelting incident, Dilip Patel said that there has always been a divide between the communities of the village. “On the night of 3 October, they allowed people to gather and started attacking us at around 11 pm. See now, their part of the village is dark, most of them have fled”, he said.

Also, the sarpanch of the village has confirmed that the violence that happened on October 3 was well-planned by the Islamists and that it was intentional. “Many people involved in the violence are absconding. They attacked our children and wives, didn’t even spare cops who rushed to the spot”, said Indravadan Patel, the sarpanch of Undhela village.

DGP Ashish Bhatia of the Gujarat Police has ordered a probe into the matter and has asked Kapadvanj Deputy Superintendent of Police V N Solanki to conduct an inquiry into the matter and submit a report at the earliest. Investigations in the case are underway.

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OpIndia Staffhttps://www.opindia.com
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