Two recent incidents in Patna and Begusarai districts of Bihar have brought the brutal face of the State police to the fore. The Patna High Court on Wednesday directed the State government to stop police brutalities, if any, in the name of lockdown violation.
Bihar is under lockdown till June 1.
In the first incident on May 25, a father-son duo was brutally beaten up allegedly by a trainee Deputy Superintendent of Police (DSP) in Paliganj of Patna district. Both Bhushan Verma and his son Vikash Kumar, resident of Baba Boring road in Paliganj area, had gone to purchase some things as Vikas Kumar, a civil service aspirant, had to catch his train for New Delhi. They had parked their motorbike by the roadside when it was hit by a moving SUV and an argument followed between them.
Meanwhile, a trainee Dy SP, Rajiv Kumar Singh, along with some policemen, reached the spot and allegedly beat up the father-son duo brutally. “Later, I wrote to senior police officials of the district and the Chief Minister to take action against the trainee Dy SP for beating us up,” said Bhushan Verma. Senior district police officials later said that a probe was on and only after investigation could anything be said on the issue.
In another incident, a video of which has gone viral on social media, a student, Shivendu Kumar, was seen being beaten up allegedly by a Circle Officer of Teghra in Begusarai district of Bihar for “violating lockdown”. The incident is said to have happened on May 12.
“I, along with my brother Hritik Kumar, was going to the Sokhara Public Health Center to get our first dose of vaccination but the local CO Paramjit Sirmaurya along with some policemen stopped us and beat us up for violating lockdown norms even after we kept telling him repeatedly that we’re going for vaccination,” said Shivendu Kumar in the video while showing deep bruises of baton hits on his back. He added, “However, we went to the PHC to get the vaccination. But while returning back when I enquired from the CO why we were beaten up while going for jab, the enraged CO started beating us up brutally again.”
Later, he said in the video the officer took them to the local Teghra police station and kept them there for five hours while seizing their mobile phone and without informing the parents. “He (Circle Officer Paramjit Sirmaurya) even lodged an FIR against us at the police station for not wearing a mask,” said Mr. Kumar while adding that he, too, has lodged an FIR against the officer. “But, nothing has happened yet on this,” he said.
Earlier, police had baton-charged some shopkeepers in Begusarai, injuring some of them for violating lockdown norms. Later, the shopkeepers sat on a dharna on the road in protest against the police brutality. Reports of police thrashing people in the name of lockdown violation have also been coming from other parts of the State.
Meanwhile, the Patna High Court, which has been monitoring the steps taken by the State government to curb the spike in COVID-19 cases in Bihar, directed the State government on Wednesday to immediately stop police brutality in the name of lockdown violation.
Bihar has so far registered 6,95,726 COVID-19 cases and has a total of 35,129 active cases. A total of 3,306 new cases were reported in the last 24 hours in the State, which has a recovery rate of 94.27%. As many as 4,746 people have died so far due to COVID-19 in Bihar.