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HindustanTimes Sat,27 Dec 2014

Custodial death mars police image in Uttarakhand

Abhinav Madhwal  Dehradun, April 15, 2014
First Published: 23:17 IST(15/4/2014) | Last Updated: 23:19 IST(15/4/2014)

The custodial death of a youth at Dalanwala police station has battered the friendly image of the Uttarakhand Police.

The Uttarakhand police had given the slogan of ‘friendly police’ which received a dent after the Ranveer encounter. The police were again building their friendly image, but the latest custodial death has tarnished their image.

Rajneesh, 22, who had been picked up from his home by the police on charges of chain snatching, died under mysterious circumstances when his body was brought to the Coronation Hospital by the police on Sunday morning. The boy’s family members alleged that he died due to police torture and lodged a case of murder against the policemen.

Already, station officer of the Dalanwala police station Chandan Singh Bisht and 4 other policemen have been sent to the police lines and magisterial enquiry has been initiated into the death.

The incident has given jitters to the police department as tough laws have been made on custodial deaths. The matter has caught the attention of the media and concerned citizens.

In 2009, the Dehradun police had come under the scanner for the alleged fake encounter with an MBA student Ranveer. He was killed near the Sal forests of Ladpur on the outskirts of the city. More than a dozen policemen are lodged in jail in connection with the murder of Ranveer. The case of Rajneesh might also become a much publicised case in days to come as it involves custodial death.

Secretary home Manjul Kumar Joshi said that senior superintendent of police, Dehradun Ajay Rautela met him to discuss the custodial death. “We have apprised the police officials that the guidelines of the human rights commission on custodial deaths have to be followed and a magisterial enquiry is compulsory,” he said.

Additional director general of police Ram Singh Meena said that the proper procedure is being followed and the law would take its own course.


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‘Central aid to state rose in past 3 yrs, but growth slow’

The annual assistance from the Centre to the state has increased in last few financial years, according to official statistics, even though the Uttarakhand government has been firing salvos at the central government over it.
 
Two days ago, the state Congress unit demanded `4,000 crore financial assistance from the centre.
According to the central statistics office figures, the Centre released `4883.74 crores for the state in 2011-12. It released `4717.68 crores in 2012-2013. And in 2013-2014, it increased the assistance to `5418.60 crores.

Uttarakhand is one of the 11 Himalayan states which enjoy special category status besides Jammu & Kashmir, Himachal Pradesh, Assam, Arunachal Pradesh, Meghalaya, Manipur, Mizoram, Nagaland, Tripura and Sikkim.
 
These special category states have to make part payment to the centre in lieu of getting funds for centrally-sponsored schemes.
Interestingly, on an average, central assistance has been substantial for the state though it has not helped Uttarakhand in increasing its Gross State Domestic Product (GSDP) which is total monetary value of goods and services produced by a state economy in a given year.
“GSDP depends on various factors like rate of savings and investments and overall business atmosphere. But that doesn’t mean the state does not need help,” said Surender Kumar, media in-charge for CM adding that the state needs more funds.
 
The figures for Uttarakhand GSDP growth at constant (2004-5) price (as on 01-08-2014) was 9.36% in 2011-12. It was 5.61% in 2012-13 and 5.65% in 2013-2014.
 
Sometime back Planning Commission constituted a committee to study development in hill states arising from management of forest land with special focus on creation of infrastructure, livelihood and human development.
 
The report of the committee was discussed in Internal Planning Committee meeting held in February this year.
A Planning Commission note claimed that IPC broadly endorsed the recommendations of the committee. The report has also been forwarded to states for further inputs.

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