Former top cops seek detailed inquiry into August 11 violence | mumbai | Hindustan Times
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Former top cops seek detailed inquiry into August 11 violence

Even though the state government has responded to the Azad Maidan violence during a rally on August 11 by transferring the top cop and the second in command - Arup Patnaik and Rajnish Seth - retired senior police officials have called for an in-depth inquiry into the preparedness and response of the Mumbai police at the time, to answer questions that has been raised over the efficiency of the force following the incident.

mumbai Updated: Aug 31, 2012 00:54 IST
HT Correspondent

Even though the state government has responded to the Azad Maidan violence during a rally on August 11 by transferring the top cop and the second in command - Arup Patnaik and Rajnish Seth - retired senior police officials have called for an in-depth inquiry into the preparedness and response of the Mumbai police at the time, to answer questions that has been raised over the efficiency of the force following the incident.

"An inquiry has become all the more necessary, not only to do away with all sort of allegations that has been made against individual officers, but also to convince people and send a right signal of fixing responsibilities," said former Mumbai police commissioner PS Pasricha.

Pasricha said the Mumbai police should be lauded for bringing situation to control and preventing escalation. "The inquiry should reveal that the situation was dealt with professionally and not with an intention to appease anybody." He said a three-member fact-finding team should be constituted by the director general of police (DGP) by picking officers of integrity and experience, and it should prepare a report on the misgivings, if any, that let miscreants had a field day in the face of heavy deployment of policemen.

Speaking in a similar vein, former IPS officer and leading lawyer YP Singh said that the violence resulted in the victimisation of Patnaik, "while the bunch of senior officers who were actually responsible for maintaining the situation never came under similar fire."

He said only a commission of inquiry would help establish the lapses in response and fix responsibility on officers who were responsible for maintaining order during the rally. "This has to be a commission inquiry on lines of the one that was constituted in the aftermath of the Ramabai Nagar firing at Ghatkopar. This was not a small incident. After all, two persons were killed in firing and several were injured in the vandalism and arson."

Former Mumbai police commissioner MN Singh said that while the government was justified in shunting out senior officers following the incident, a stock-taking exercise is required to find out the lapses in preparedness and response. "But it should not be a judicial inquiry, which is a nice way to postpone things," he said.