Cancelled permission after provocative speeches: Delhi Police

Last Updated: Tuesday, June 7, 2011 - 22:06

New Delhi: Delhi Police has cited
"provocative" speeches made by religious and political
leaders, including Baba Ramdev and Sadhvi Ritambara, as the
main reason for cancelling permission for the yoga guru`s
protest at Ramlila Maidan here.

Police also said Ramdev and his associates refused to
accept the letter cancelling permission for his camp and dared
senior officials to do "whatever they wanted" to do.

Ramdev made a provocative speech in which he said his
protest will end only with his death or if 1.25 crore people
desired, they said.

Police said the organiser Bharat Swabhiman Trust had
sought permission for a yoga session for 5,000 people from
June one for 20 days but the numbers swelled to over 25,000 by
June 3rd midnight.

Ramdev and his followers were sitting on a protest
against corruption at the maidan from where police evicted
them on Saturday night after cancelling permission for the
agitation, citing threat to the yoga guru`s life.

In the FIR filed at Kamla Market police station
following the police crackdown at Ramlila Maidan, police said
though they had sought permission only for 5,000 people, the
organisers had installed 800 toilets, numerous booster pumps
and set up a 40-bed hospital inside the Maidan.

"On June four morning, the yoga session led by Baba
Ramdev went on for three hours and it took the colour of a
rally due to the presence of Sadhvi Ritambara, Mailana Kalbe
Jabbar, Akali Dal leader Omkar Singh Thapar and other
religious and political leaders and these leaders made
provocative speeches.

"They urged people to intensify their protest and said
if their demands were not met, they will not move out of the
Maidan. Keeping their activities in view, senior officials
held consultation and decided to cancel the permission for the
camp," Surinder Jeet Kaur, the Station House Officer of Kamla
Market, said in the FIR.

At around 12:30 am, Kaur said, police went to meet
Ramdev and his associates Acharya Balkrishna, Acharya Virendra
Virendra Vikram and Swami Sampoornanand, who refused to accept
the letter cancelling the permission.

Ramdev, who leaped from the stage to the ground,
addressed his followers through a public address system and
asked women to form his inner security cordon while youth
formed the outer one. He also asked the elderly to move to the
back, the FIR said.

As more and more followers gathered near him, police
said, he returned to the stage and continued his speech. In
between, his followers used bricks and stones, flower pots and
lathis, iron rods and fire-fighter spray and indulged in
violence.

None of his followers listened to police requests to
stay calm, Kaur said, adding police resorted to using water
canons to disperse the crowd which had some effect. However,
they gathered together with "renewed vigour" and began pelting
stones.

Though a portion of the right side of the stage caught
fire, it was brought under control, she said, adding that
police resorted to lobbing teargas shells which resulted in
the crowd dispersing.

The violence also resulted in damage to some vehicles,
furniture, electronic and electric equipment in the premises.

"The followers and office-bearers of Bharat Swabhiman
Trust gathered there and using dangerous substances attacked
police and obstructed the functioning of public servants
leading to injuries to policemen. Their act also resulted in
causing damage to private and public property. They created a
riot situation in a public place," Kaur said.

PTI



First Published: Tuesday, June 7, 2011 - 22:06

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