Karnal: “No one on this side of the barricade should be seen without their heads smashed,” the Sub-Divisional Magistrate (SDM) of Haryana’s Karnal Ayush Sinha was allegedly caught on camera instructing the policemen to use force against the farmers who were on their way to protest against a BJP meeting being attended by Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar, state BJP president Om Prakash Dhankar and other senior leaders of the party.
Around 10 people were reportedly injured Saturday (August 28) as police allegedly lathi-charged a group of farmers heading towards Karnal.
Several pictures of bleeding farmers surfaced which forced even the party’s own senior leader Varun Gandhi to question the SDM’s action.
“I hope this video is edited and the DM did not say this… Otherwise, this is unacceptable in democratic India to do to our own citizens,” Gandhi said in a tweet.
Watch the video here:
Samyukt Kisan Morcha (SKM) leader Yogendra Yadav shared pictures of multiple farmers having sustained injuries. He called out the police and the state government for their action.
“Brutal police lathicharge on farmers in Gharonda (Karnal), Haryana. They were protesting against the visit of CM Khattar and other BJP leaders to Karnal. This is the true face of Haryana police,” Yadav tweeted.
The state police drew severe criticism for the action against the farmers, and several roads were blocked at different places in protest.
The affected routes included the Fatehabad-Chandigarh, Gohana-Panipat and the Jind-Patiala highways, and the Ambala-Chandigarh and the Hisar-Chandigarh national highways.
Several protesters present at the site near the Bastara toll plaza around 15 km from Karnal claimed to have witnessed 8-10 people sustain injuries in the police action.
The police, however, said that only mild force was used as the protesters were blocking the highway, affecting traffic movement.
Citing section 144 of the CrPC imposed in the area banning assembly of five or more people, the police said they made several announcements over loudspeakers, declaring the gathering by the protesters "unlawful".