Bury your heads in the ground, pusillanimous darbaris of neo Hastinapur.
In the presence of cops, under the gaze of the media, in the premises of a court, Bharat Mata gets disrobed by thugs and hooligans in the garb of nationalism, people are beaten and pillars of our democracy are bulldozed.
What were you doing, Dhritrashtra BS Bassi?
You and your men sat there and watched helplessly, like lifeless, limp puppets drained of conscience and stripped of sense of duty; manifesting loyalty to the throne, instead of the state.
Don't forget, there is nothing more anti-national than forgetting the oath of allegiance to the Constitution. Don't forget, we the people of India are the state, not your political masters.
Let us put the malign incompetence of the cops in perspective. On Tuesday, BJP legislators, workers and lawyers pounced on the media and students in the Patiala House court.
For argument's sake, let us give them benefit of the doubt, believing that they too were caught off-guard and the thugs sprang a surprise on Bassi's brave soldiers.
But, how could it happen again the next day, in spite of advance warning and instructions from the court? If this is not incompetence, is it complicity?
Dhritrashtra, are you running a police force or a band of silent spectators and cheerleaders?
On Monday, when thugs in black coats and saffron dupattas attacked people in the court, their violence was caught on TV camera and on CCTV installed in the court. There was sufficient evidence to take action against the perpetrators of court violence.
If the cops had taken prompt action, it would have instilled the fear of the law in the heart of the goons. But, you did not show the kind of alacrity that inspired your swift crackdown on the JNU against "unidentified" persons accused of slogan-shouting and dissenting with the government. Maybe you were more keen to instill the fear of goons in the law.
And your explanations? You claim that on Wednesday, there was no violence, just dhakka-mukki in the court.
Dhritrashtra, I suggest you explain this to the family of Firstpost reporter Tarique Anwar, whose face was smashed by this dhakka-mukki in the court by thugs under your watch when he was in the court, performing his duty, feeling secure in the knowledge that you and your cops would be doing the same.
Only this morning, Tarique had spoken to SR Darapuri, a retired inspector general of police from Uttar Pradesh. And this is what Darapuri had to say about you: Bassi’s attitude appears to be “partisan” and that he is “toeing the line of his political bosses”. “It was extremely shameful and unbecoming that an officer of the rank of commissioner of police tried to defend what had happened in the court complex and giving a political statement. He is wholly siding with the ruling political party at the Centre; rather he is acting as a muscle man of the BJP. All his actions and statements in the past few months show his partisan attitude.”
Guess what! Tarique did not believe him and trusted you and your men to perform their duty while he performed his own on Wednesday.
We know you will retire soon. And once you hang your vardi, whatever its real colour, the government may reward you for your exemplary service with the job of Chief Information Commissioner. Maybe you will even get a Padma Shri.
Arun Shourie once famously said, "A dog with a bone in its mouth does not bark. A dog eyeing a bone also does not bark." Don't take the metaphor literally, but we know it is human to get tempted.
But, don't forget, some day there may be another mob, another student, another police commissioner, another government, another day.
Let's hope a Bassi doesn't get caught in it.
And the top cop then doesn't behave like a Bassi, Dhritrashtra.
First Published On : Feb 17, 2016 22:51 IST