Delhi chief minister Arvind Kejriwal has stepped up pressure against the Delhi Police to take action against the five policemen for not performing their duty. On the second day of protest, the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) chief threatened to flood Rajpath, the Republic Day celebrations venue, with his supporters.
AAP is demanding the suspension of five cops who failed to conduct raid on a building that was allegedly a drug and prostitution ring. The Delhi chief minister refused to scale down the protest stating that safety of women cannot be negotiated in the capital.
Kejriwal wants Delhi Police to be brought under the Delhi government, which is currently under the central government that controls it through the home ministry.
Last week Somnath Bharti, Delhi’s law minister, had tried to “uncover a sex and drug racket” through a fake customer at a building in Khirki Extension, in south Delhi. Bharti asked the police personnels accompanying him to conduct a raid on the building, which they refused citing lack of search warrant and police back-up.
Rakhi Birla, Delhi’s women and child development minister, also faced hurdles with a non-cooperative police in Sagarpur. There the police personnels allegedly refused to take into custody the in-laws of a woman with 45% burns and who has been hospitalised.
The Delhi government has a police force, which it cannot direct to protect the life and interest of the people of the national capital. It has been given a responsibility but the police, which has to maintain law and order, is not accountable to the chief minister, who has to protect the interest of its citizens. In such a scenario, the accountability of the police force is takes a beating.
Over the last two decades, several Chief Ministers of Delhi including Sheila Dikshit have felt helpless and appealed to MHA that police should be brought under the control of the state government.
The main reason for not bringing Delhi police force under the state government is due to security concerns related to Central government functionaries and institutions that are largely located in New Delhi district. This concern can be taken care of with a Presidential notification allowing the Union government to retain control while delegating its powers. Delhi Police can be made responsible to the Delhi government over three major functions of public order, crime and investigation. For rest of the functions, police can be under the control of MHA.
Police excesses or negligence has brutalized the life of the common man. The police force has been created with the intension of protecting the lives of the common man. But it seems that only the well-heeled ones in India enjoy the protection of police force.
Kejriwal and his ministers, out to clean the police force, are being asked to tone down the protest. The AAP supporters are allegedly harassing his supporters outside the Rail Bhawan, the protest venue. Had the UPA government used only a small part of the police force to prevent prostitution, drug dealers-police connivance, the situation would not have required the Delhi chief minister to camp on the street protesting for the cause of the common man.
How is it that cases of rape raises its ugly head time and again? Why can’t the police solve the cases speedily. Why was the Mumbai police not able to rescue Esther Anuhya who was abducted and kept captive at a brothel in Kamatipura for five days before her brutal death. How could the Danish women be gang raped for three hours at the heart of Delhi when there are reportedly many police patrol vans roaming the streets of the national capital. Isn’t it dereliction of duty? Or are the police personnels paid a salary only to protect the politicians and the wealthy people of this country.
(AW: Pratima Tigga)
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