BJP targets police, Centre but rues Ramdev too indicted

Last Updated: Thursday, February 23, 2012 - 19:39

New Delhi: In the backdrop of the Supreme Court verdict on the midnight crackdown on Ramdev`s supporters at Ramlila grounds here, BJP on Thursday targeted Delhi police as
also their bosses in the Union Home Ministry and the government but rued the yoga guru too has been indicted.

BJP maintained Delhi police alone should not be held
guilty for the "human rights violations" as it was "acting at
the behest of their bosses in the central government, namely,
Congress chief Sonia Gandhi, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and
union ministers P Chidambaram and Kapil Sibal.

"Such an attack on peaceful supporters of Ramdev would
not have been possible without political clearance at a very
high level. The policemen have suffered but what about
political accountability?" BJP chief spokesperson Ravi Shankar
Prasad said.

He alleged that not only Home Minister Chidambaram and
HRD Minister Sibal were "accountable and responsible" for
the incident but also Sonia Gandhi and the Prime Minister.

"(That is)...because her party and the government have
sustained a campaign against Ramdev, Anna Hazare and Sri Sri
Ravi Shankar," Prasad alleged.

However, BJP disagreed with the Supreme Court for holding
Ramdev responsible for "contributory negligence".

"We do not agree with this view of the Supreme Court.
Only if the crowd had been violent could Ramdev be held
responsible. The organiser of the agitation cannot be held
equally responsible. Then by the same measure, Mahatma Gandhi
would be held equally responsible for the atrocities of the
British during the freedom struggle," another BJP spokesperson
Prakash Javadekar said.

Javadekar said BJP does not agree with the SC order that
Ramdev`s Bharat Swabhiman Trust should pay 25 per cent of the
compensation.

"This is in a way akin to imposing a fine on Ramdev. We
do not agree with it. Even the court is diluting the right to
protest. We do not agree that Ramdev should be held
responsible for contributory negligence," Javadekar said.

The party welcomed the SC observation that the whole
scenario was avoidable.

"Delhi police violated the human rights of the people
that night. We welcome the Supreme Court verdict. But this
verdict also raises larger questions. If the police are
responsible for the crackdown, then its bosses in the Home
Ministry and the central government are also responsible,"
Javadekar said.

BJP alleged the Home Ministry headed by Chidambaram, the
top brass of the UPA government as well as Sonia Gandhi had
issued directions to Delhi police to go ahead with the
crackdown.

Javadekar insisted the apex court has indicted Delhi
police- and by extension the central government- on counts of
perpetrating police action against a lawful gathering, acting
in a barbaric manner, breaching the peace enforced by Section
144 IPC, attacking a crowd which was asleep, among other
issues.

PTI



First Published: Thursday, February 23, 2012 - 19:38

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