NEW DELHI: Hours after an image of a group of policemen holding metal rods with hand and forearm armour was widely circulated on social media on Monday, the Delhi Police withdrew the ‘modified’ batons.
The police personnel in Shahdara district were provided with the rods to protect them from attack by sharp-edged weapons or sword injuries.
During violent protests by participants of farmers’ tractor rally on January 26, some miscreants allegedly attacked policemen with swords.
“The iron rods with armour were not approved officially. It was just for trial. They have been withdrawn,” said a senior police official.
Earlier, the officials said that ‘modified batons’ had been made available to minimise impact or to be used in self defence.
The official added that no formal orders were issued to acquire the metal rods and an explanation had been sought from the district. Speaking to the mediaperson, Delhi Police Commissioner SN Srivastava, “I can’t tell you what is that. Steel batons are not a part of police weaponry.”
Also responding to queries regarding the ‘customized’ batons, a senior official of Delhi Police had said on Monday, “These preparations (metal rods) are to control any situation — riots and law and order situations. This is to fight sword wielding rioters. There are some bad elements and persons who pretend to be farmers and are trying to create riot-like situations and unrest in the city. Some people are spreading wrong information to fight farmers and Nihangs. Farmers and nihangs are our brothers and friends. This is strictly to fight people with swords and rioters.”