Jat riots: Police cowards, acted with caste bias, says Report
CHANDIGARH: “Some officers exhibited cowardice while facing the rioters.. Army was not properly utilised.. there was no state control room during the riots and the officers of both civil and police officials had caste bias,’’ stated the report of the committee headed by Uttar Pradesh and Assam Director General of Police Prakash Singh regarding February’s Jat reservation protests.
The 417-page report, which was made public on Tuesday, said the Haryana Police showed hesitation in using force.
“What was lacking was the will to act... Officers at the district level, barring a few honorable exceptions, just did not rise to the occasion. There were also some instances when the officers are suspected to have abetted the rioters,’’ it stated.
The report stated, “We may find fault with Haryana Police and rightly so for being a mute spectator to the widespread burning and destruction of public and private property.”
The hard-hitting report stated, “Some officers could not keep their nerves and chose the option of remaining inactive or disappearing from the scene. One duty magistrate, posted at Gohana bus stand, admitted that he got scared after hearing the war cry type of exhortations by the rioters. The station house officer of Pillukhera police station also admitted that he along with his staff took shelter on the roof of the police station, when the rioters attacked.”
Coming down heavily on the police, it said, “The caste bias of the officers, both of the civil administration and the police, was seen in inaction against rioters. The bias was conspicuous at the level of SDM, DSP and SHOs.’’
The committee noted that there was no state control room during the riots. It added, “The committee found a Deputy Commissioner who was just not cut out for holding charge of a district. Another Deputy Commissioner, though a good human material, was not equal to the challenges he confronted. One Inspector General suffered almost a nervous breakdown and suffered delusions.’’
“The Director General of Police remained confined to Chandigarh. The Home Department was a washout. The Additional Chief Secretary (Home) could not produce before the Committee even one page of directions to the Deputy Commissioners or the Superintendents of Police,’’ it stated. It was distressing that the Army was not properly utilised and were perhaps misled into inaction, it noted.
Meanwhile, with Jat community members set to hold sit-in demonstrations across the state on June 5, central forces and police on Tuesday staged flag-marches in many districts, as Haryana Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar asserted that law and order would be maintained at any cost.