Vinod Anand | 17 Aug 2013

THE STORY OF COPS: TWO SIDES (Vinod Anand) In recent incidents at Allahabad, cops behaved in a typical manner. There are two stories in this context. Here is the first side of the story of cops, quite opposed to what the SSP stands for. I want to refer to the report about the suspension of Dewan Vijay Bahadur Singh, constables Kaushalendra Pande and Mritanjay Yadav of Police Lines for gross negligence of duty. Lt did not surprise me at all. Their: fault? They fell asleep on duty in train while escorting an under-trial prisoner, who escaped from custody by jumping from the - — compartment. Why the report didn’t surprise me is because this type of cases have been occurring with such alarming frequency as to create suspicion that there is more to these happenings than meets the eye. It is interesting to note that the under- trial was being escorted back from Meerut, where he had been taken for a court hearing, back to Allahabad to be lodged in Naini jail. It is difficult to believe that all the three fell asleep simultaneously and also woke up together at Subedarganj station to discover that the man had escaped. According to one report, they subsequently disclosed that the man had fled from Tundla. If that be so, why didn’t they raise a hue and cry at Tundla? But another: report says that this information about the man escaping from Tundla was not given by the trio but by the Ghaziabad police that caught the man as he was in handcuffs. It is the handcuffs that aroused the suspicion of the Ghaziabad cops. The under-trial then confessed to the cops that he had fled from Tundla. There are various possibilities .One of these is that the escapee was allowed to go by the cops willingly and in return they were bribed heavily by him or his relatives. It is possible that the transaction took place before the start of the journey and money paid in advance. As I said, this is a possibility. The suspicion is aroused, especially if we accept the version of the cops themselves that he escaped at Tundla. Why did they initially lie that he had fled at Subedarganj? Obviously that was done to mislead the investigators and give sufficient time to the under-trial to escape. Even if the Ghaziabad police discovered from the culprit himself that he had jumped out of the train when it slowed down near Tundla, ‘that would not change the complexion of story because if he had escaped with the connivance of the three, it was obvious he must have been assured, as a part of the bargain, to reveal about his escape only from Subedarganj. They had not foreseen that Ghaziabad police would be so alert as to nab the escapee. It is hoped that the higher authorities will institute a thorough probe and also ensure that for transporting such under- trials to other cities, or even from Naini jail to Kutcherry and back, foolproof arrangements will be made so that there is no scope for anyone to escape with or without the connivance of the cops accompanying them. The other side of the police performance is linked with what the cops told the women protestors? Would you believe it? But this is what has been reported in a Hindi daily which has quoted one Shyam Babu of Sagarpesha Kalyan Samiti to say that when a procession of protesters, including a large number of women, went to the - ADA office to lodge their protest against the move to dispossess them of their houses on Mahatma Gandhi Marg by the Authority, they had to encounter unbecoming behaviour from a section of the cops who had been called for help by the officers there as a precaution. The women folk were shouting, if we are forced out of our dwellings, where will we seek shelter?’ On hearing their shouts and cries some cops posted there told the women folk: ‘Come to our house; you can stay there and will not have to pay any rent’. When word went round that cops were inviting women folk to stay with them in their vacant rooms without paying rent, a wave of anger swept the gathering of protesters, especially the protesters who just couldn’t contain their anger and started raising slogans. Report says the ADA staff and officials also made good their escape, the protesters then marched towards Subhash crossing. What happens next is anyone’s guess. The cops will of course deny having ever said that. But even if they didn’t say all that and the story was cooked up to create sensation, who will believe them? The benefit of ‘doubt will go in favour of the protesters because everyone knows the types of foul language cops in many cases are in the habit of using. Mr. SSP, is there any cure for such behaviour except diverting them to sports in their free hours? But will politicians with vested interests allow them to take to sports and stop playing the games that they, organize for them?     PAGE  PAGE 2