At least 11 people have been arrested in connection with the death of a police constable in Uttar Pradesh's Ghazipur. Additional Director General of Police (Varanasi Zone) PV Rama Sastry said 32 people had been named in the FIR, which also mentions over 70 to 80 unidentified accused.
Police constable Suresh Vats was killed on Saturday when protesters hurled stones at vehicles returning from the public rally Prime Minister Narendra Modi had addressed at Ghazipur. The 48-year-old was hit in the head by a stone when he had gone to clear a traffic jam caused by the protests.
Uttar Pradesh Director General of Police OP Singh also tweeted that 19 people had been arrested in three separate cases, including the 11 arrested for the "murder" of the police constable. "Strict action will be taken against those involved in violence," he said, calling Vats' death "extremely tragic".
Superintendent of Police (Ghazipur) Yashveer Singh said the protesters were workers from the Rashtriya Nishad Party, who the Uttar Pradesh administration and police had prevented from going to Modi's rally. "When the prime minister left Ghazipur, the party workers blocked traffic at various places and started pelting stones on the vehicles returning from the programme venue," Singh said.
However, Rashtriya Nishad Party president Sanjay Nishad claimed that the BJP was conspiring against them.
"We need a proper investigation into the case. It is BJP who is plotting against us. It was not our party workers but BJP workers who threw stones at people. We're taking our demand of reservation ahead in a democratic manner. If my party workers are found guilty, we will take strict action against them. It is easy to blame the weak as Yogi ji and Modi ji are in power," he said, according to ANI.
The 48-year-old police constable from the Karimuddinpur Police Station was hit on the head by a stone when he had gone to clear a traffic jam caused by the protests. "He was immediately taken to hospital where he succumbed to his injuries," the Superintendent of Police said, adding that the police are trying to identify other protesters through video footage of the incident.
'Adityanath's grand jungle rule'
The Congress did not leave the opportunity to attack the BJP-led Uttar Pradesh government over the death of yet another police officer in mob violence.
Reacting to the incident, the party's chief spokesperson Randeep Surjewala said: "In Adityanath's grand jungle rule, neither the people are safe, nor are the police... Today in Ghazipur, after Modi ji's rally, a mob mercilessly killed police constable Suresh Vats."
He also pointed out that Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath had described the killing of police inspector Subodh Kumar Singh in Bulandshahr as an accident, though it was a case of mob violence.
Congress leader Sanja Nirupam also reacted to the Vats' "cop lynching" in Ghazipur and insinuated that the prime minister's public meeting may have "instigated" the crowd, demanding that the angle be looked into.
Another case of cop lynching in UP !
After #Bulandshahr another police man Suresh Vatsa is killed by mob in Gazipur today.
This happened immediately after PM MODI's public meeting there. Did he instigate the crowd? Must be probed.
Can Yogi do this? Don't think so. pic.twitter.com/E4VO1LJYdX
— Sanjay Nirupam (@sanjaynirupam) December 29, 2018
'Police not able to protect their own'
Adityanath has announced compensation of Rs 40 lakh for the deceased constable's wife and Rs 10 lakh for his parents. On Saturday, he also directed the district magistrate and the Superintendent of Police to take strict action against unruly elements and arrest them immediately.
ANI quoted Vats' son, VP Singh, as saying, "Police is not being able to protect their own. What can we expect from them? What will we do with compensation now? Earlier, similar incidents took place in Bulandshahr and Pratapgarh."
VP Singh, son of deceased constable Suresh Vats who died in Ghazipur in a stone pelting incident y'day: Police is not being able to protect their own. What can we expect from them?What will we do with compensation now?Earlier,similar incidents took place in Bulandshahr&Pratapgarh pic.twitter.com/2xgarpIDXB
— ANI UP (@ANINewsUP) December 30, 2018
With inputs from agencies
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Updated Date: Dec 30, 2018 14:52:58 IST