The Uttar Pradesh government might have taken a month to act against senior superintendent of police R.K.S Rathore and circle officer Dinesh Yadav but its two-member inquiry panel had indicted the duo in unambiguous terms for lapses in the investigation into the case of Nithari’s missing children.
The committee formed by the state government had filed a report on January 5, holding both officers guilty of negligence.
While three senior police officers had been suspended and six dismissed in the first week of January, the government had let Rathore and Yadav off the hook and preferred not to act on the findings of the committee, which it had itself constituted.
The committee in its report had said, “SSP Rathore has committed a grave mistake and it shows his negligence and dereliction of duty. For this, we recommend major punishment against him.”
However, though the report clearly indicts Yadav as the man responsible for the lax policing in the area, it takes a soft line against him. “Dinesh Yadav’s negligence is apparent and for this, minor punishment is recommended against him,” it said.
“During his tenure, three people under 18 years and one over 18 went missing, and were confirmed dead … four other people went missing during his tenure, but missing reports were not lodged,” the report said.
The report also categorically mentions that although Payal’s father Nand Lal might have met Yadav repeatedly, he waited till the court orders to register the FIR. But the report also has praise for Yadav. “After the FIR, he worked with great dedication and helped unravel the case. Yadav was praised by all the families of the missing children we met.”
A sting operation conducted by Tehelka magazine and aired on Star News on Thursday had exposed Dinesh Yadav’s close links with Pandher. Tehelka claimed that Yadav and his colleagues travelled to Allahabad by AC first class at Pandher’s expense to attend his anticipatory bail hearings.
The report mentions that during Rathore’s tenure eight persons went missing, of whom two persons returned. At least five of these missing persons were killed. Rathore was also held responsible for not registering a FIR in Payal’s case. “If SSP Rathore had registered the FIR on time and arrested the two accused, seven lives could have been saved,” the committee noted. The committee also criticised Rathore for limiting the investigations to prostitution and beggary.
In a strange reaction to Rathore’s transfer, relatives of Nithari victims went to the SSP’s office and gave a memorandum to District Magistrate requesting cancellation of transfer order.
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