New Delhi: Activists Arvind Kejriwal and Prashant Bhushan were among four persons named by Delhi Police in its FIRs for “provoking” protesters during demonstration in the capital on the coal block allocation issue.
Police are also understood to have sought CCTV footage and video footage from various channels to identify people involved in rioting, especially those who protested outside the Prime Minister’s Office in South Block.
Five cases have been registered in Tuglaq Road and Parliament Street police stations yesterday, naming Kejriwal, Bhushan, Manish Sisodia and Kumar Vishwas in separate FIRs, a senior police official said. The names of Gopal Rai and Neeraj Kumar are mentioned in one of the FIRs.
974 protesters were detained yesterday in connection with the protest by India Against Corruption in which 21 people, including 15 policemen were injured, the official said. The activists and other unknown persons were charged under 11 sections of Indian Penal Code related to rioting, not obeying lawful orders, defying prohibitory orders, assaulting government servants, provoking people to riot and a section under Prevention of Damage to Public Property, which is non-bailable.
One of the FIRs alleged that Kejriwal provoked sloganeering protesters who were marching towards Prime Minister’s residence and his supporters defied warnings and entered into a scuffle with policemen, injuring the personnel. They also punctured tyres of a state-run bus on the middle of the road causing traffic jam on the stretch, the FIR claimed.
In another FIR on an incident near Congress chief Sonia Gandhi‘s residence, Bhushan, Sisodia and Vishwas were named for allegedly provoking people.
“Bhushan, Sisodia and Vishwas provoked their supporters and marched towards 10-Janpath. Despite warnings and use of water cannons, the crowd became more agitated and marched forward. Seven teargas shells were lobbed and as it did not help, mild force was used to contain them,” the FIR said. The FIR alleged that some of the protesters used the stick on flags to beat policemen besides damaging a DTC bus and deflating its trye.
One of the two FIRs filed at Parliament Street Police station also alleged that people damaged a DTC bus. There is also the mention of Gopal Rai and Neeraj Kumar in this FIR besides that of Kejriwal, Bhushan and Sisodia.
The FIR alleged that the protesters when they reached in front of Parliament Street police station were told about prohibitory orders but they defied it on the instance of provocation by leaders and broke three layers of barricade to march towards Parliament. The fifth FIR was against unknown persons about the protest near Prime Minister’s Office in the afternoon.