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Cops increasingly on receiving end

NEARLY HALF a dozen attacks on police parties around Bhopal in the last year have brought into sharp focus the vulnerability of the force.

india Updated: Apr 09, 2006 21:50 IST

NEARLY HALF a dozen attacks on police parties around Bhopal in the last year have brought into sharp focus the vulnerability of the force.

The latest attack occurred near Khajuri Kalan village in Bilkhiria that left almost a dozen cops including a CSP and two sub-inspectors injured on Thursday.

Last month a police party from Rajasthan led by a DSP was roughed up in Parvalia where it had gone to a distillery for investigation. Besides, two policemen were assaulted in Rajiv Nagar on March 4 when they went to arrest a history-sheeter Lachhu. One of the policemen, Rameshwar Mishra, was critically injured as he was attacked with a sword.

In one of the worst such attacks, a police team of Shamsabad that had gone to the settlement of a de-notified tribe at Berasia last year too faced a violent attack. Over a dozen policemen were injured, five of them seriously and their vehicles set afire.

DIG Bhopal Range Anuradha Shankar Singh says attacks on police were unfortunate but she feels that it was not a new phenomenon.

“It is often an expression of public rage besides several other causes but such incidents are shocking indeed,” she said. “Police is the most visible symbol of Government authority and that is also one of the causes behind the targeting of policemen,” she adds.

In the Capital, policemen have been attacked in Talaiya, Jehangirabad and Nishatpura amongst other localities recently. “The policeman no longer wields the influence and power in society as he did in the yore,” said a Station Officer (SO) requesting anonymity.

“Not only the policeman is at risk from criminal gangs or mob angry over accidental death but petty rows often lead to brutal attacks on the personnel,” he adds.

A few months back a policeman was stabbed with a knife in Jehangirabad when he tried to intervene in a scuffle. Other cases include the attack on a Crime Branch team in Talaiya that had gone to arrest a suspect. As the plain-clothed policemen had beaten a youth, angry residents caught the police and roughed them up.

Similarly, a police team that had gone to Tumda village in Khajuri to catch one, Ishaq, were beaten up. In fact, umpteen such attacks have occurred in the City alone in the last few years.

Sources say often when a section of policemen who are allegedly in cahoots with criminals themselves go for a crackdown on crime, the situation takes an ugly trend. Public anger is already directed against the police because the image of policeman in the society largely remains that of an insensitive and often shady person. No wonder then that incidents as minor as a policeman stopping youths from felling tree has led to assault on the official.

When Nannu Meena, a policeman, was murdered in Wireless Colony last year, it was nothing but manifestation of the same trend, feel policemen. All over the State such attacks have been reported with the most shocking being in Sagar on February 8 when policemen were shot at and attacked leading to half-a-dozen getting seriously injured.