Tractor rally chaos: FIRs filed under attempt to murder, criminal conspiracy
A day after protesting farmers clashed with police and indulged in violence across the city, Delhi Police have filed at least 25 FIRs in cases related to it. While a majority of the cases are registered under sections of rioting, causing hurt by dangerous weapons, obstructing police from doing their duty, police have also filed some cases under heinous sections of attempt to murder and attempt to culpable homicide in clashes reported from the Red Fort, ITO and Ghazipur. In one FIR, police are also probing protesters for destroying CCTV cameras on the road.
Delhi Police officers, who did not wish to be named, said the FIRs have the names of many farmer leaders who have been caught on tape instigating people to break barricades and force their way into the national Capital on Tuesday. Police said that some of the FIRs registered in connection with the violence at Red Fort and ITO would be transferred to the Crime Branch -- a specialised unit in the Delhi police.
“We have enough evidence in the form of videos which shows unruly protesters grouping together to throw police personnel off the ramparts of the Red Fort. We have a strong legal case of attempt to murder. We will identify those people and take suitable action,” said a senior police officer, who did not wish to be named.
In the Red Fort violence case, police have also added sections of criminal conspiracy. This means that police have, prima facie, found that the violence during the rally was not spontaneous but was designed and planned as a conspiracy by the accused persons.
A second police officer said that they have also registered FIRs under sections of destruction of evidence. In connection with the vandalism at ITO in central Delhi, police investigation has revealed that some unruly farmers destroyed CCTV cameras installed on the road. Police have registered the FIR under section 201 of the Indian Penal Code.
At least 86 police personnel and ten farmers were injured when the tractor rally -- supposed to be peaceful and only in places pre-decided by the police and farmers in their meeting-- resulted in violence and hundreds of farmers laid siege of the Red Fort in the national Capital. Police have claimed that the protesters violated all conditions on the basis of which they were given permission to hold the tractor rally on Republic Day.
Samyukt Kisan Morcha, an umbrella collective of over 40 farmer groups, had on Tuesday night, following the violence, said that the protest was hijacked by people not connected with them. They also dissociated themselves from the protesters who had attacked the police and indulged in violence during the day.
The second police officer cited above said that the many leaders, including those from the SKM, would be probed.
Appearing before the Punjab and Haryana high court with regard to status of different infrastructure projects related to the Chandigarh International Airport, the UT administration on Thursday informed the court that a shorter route to the airport was in the works. In March, HC had sought fresh progress reports from UT on the airport-related projects. The directions came on a 2015 public interest litigation by Mohali Industries Association, alleging lack of facilities at the airport.
Former cricketer and actor Gulzar Inder Singh Chahal, 39, was unanimously elected as the new president of the Punjab Cricket Association on Thursday. Gulzar has succeeded noted industrialist Rajinder Gupta, who had resigned in April after his tenure got over. Four more office-bearers, including vice-president Gagan Khanna, secretary Dilsher Khanna, joint secretary Surjit Rai and treasurer Rakesh Walia, were also elected at PCA's annual general meeting at its stadium in Phase 9, Mohali.
Further interrogation of gangster Lakhbir Singh's five associates, who were arrested on Wednesday, has revealed that the AK-47 magazine recovered from them is of the rifle recovered from Nishan Singh, arrested earlier in May for giving logistics support for the RPG attack at Punjab Police's intelligence headquarters in Mohali. According to police, his associate, Nishan and Lovejeet Singh, alias Love, 20 knew each other and worked for a close associate of Khalistani terrorist Harvinder Singh Rinda, Landa, who operates from Pakistan.
In the past one year, Panchkula has witnessed over 68 protests. What remained the common factor among them was the protest site -- the Housing Board chowk. Instead of using the designated dharna ground, the protesters chose the chowk – the main connecting point between Chandigarh and Panchkula – leaving hundreds of commuters a harried lot. Water cannons were used at least eight times on the protesters near the Housing Board chowk.
As many as 23 people tested positive in Chandigarh on Thursday, highest in three months. It was on February 26 last that the city had recorded 25 infections, following which their number crossed the 20 mark only once on May 11, when 22 people were found infected. The new cases were reported from Sectors 8, 11, 19, 21, 22, 23, 25, 26, 44, 48 and 38 (West), Daria, Khuda Lahora, Manimajra and PGIMER campus.