Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Delhi police picks the wrong guy, its time for payback!

Sometimes it seems that it is necessary that some foreigner has to be beaten, murdered, raped in India to enable the police, and administrative system in India to wake up and hopefully do some reforms.  The logic of reform follows because although many Indians will make do with a bad government and injustice, when the matter gets international attention, the government wants to act so as to keep faith with international community about India’s democracy, principles, etc etc. 

Following story of a US journalist having been beaten by Delhi police made news a while ago, and now it has been published in Outlook India giving story and pictures of the torture.

An Encounter With Delhi Police

This is what Delhi police has to say:

Joel Elliott, an award-winning American freelance journalist, working as a staff writer at Caravan magazine in Delhi since May this year, has  charged "six to seven hours of beating and torture" by Delhi Police, for intervening while the cops were thrashing another man. Delhi Police, on its part, insists that Elliot was drunk, trying to steal a taxi, and had beaten up a couple of police men and an elderly driver.

This is what happened according to the journalist and going by the details it seems quite plausible to be the true story, and Delhi police’s version being their concocted version:

I came around the comer of a building and walked literally into the middle of an altercation between at least four Delhi Police Officers, in uniform, beating a person beside the street. As I had not been paying attention, one police officer's baton struck me, perhaps by accident, while he was beating the other person on the ground. Startled. I shouted. When I realized what was happening to the person on the ground, I shouted again. The police officer closest to me turned and advanced, shouting something in a language I did not understand. I shouted back, saying they couldn't just beat people in the street. In the middle of the exchange, the officer swung his baton and struck me in the left upper arm area and began to raise his baton to strike again. I struck him in the jaw, and as he reeled back, turned and fled, turning off of the way to my home, as the officers were in the way. They gave chase, but I had somewhat of head start, and it was quite dark, so I was able to evade their line of vision for a time. It took me a few moments to find my way back to a road that I recognized. The problem was that they could easily catch me in their mobile command post. I began searching for a hiding place, and the most obvious places were in the row of cars parked along the left hand side of the road. I slowed to a fast walk, trying door handles to see if one were unlocked. I was hoping I could hide inside one of the cars until the polite passed, since I was afraid they found me. Door after door I tried, to no avail. The last Car I tried was an Ambassador cab -- I had been particularly hopeful about this car, because it had darkened windows. However, I had apparently chosen a car near Bhogal Marker that was parked next to a guard, or a driver, because someone came out of the shadows shouting. I tried to explain I wanted a hiding place, not to steal a car (after all my home was only five or six blocks away - why would I need a taxi?) But the man was shouting in a language I did not understand, and apparently did not understand me, either. His shouts alerted the police, who were already in pursuit, as was mentioned before, and they arrived quickly and surrounded me. Advancing quickly, they began beating me with their batons. In self-defense, I swung at, and connected, with a few of them, but I quickly went down beneath a rain of blows on my head, back, arms, thighs, shins, buttocks and ankles. The beating continued for some time after I had fallen.



I request a thorough inquiry into the six to seven hours of beating and torture I endured at the hands, feet and batons of Delhi Police. I request that the police officers responsible be removed from their positions

Further, I seek $500,000 US dollars in compensation for pain and suffering and mental anguish the Delhi Police inflicted upon me.

Enough Indians need to follow the same approach if they hope to change the system instead of complaining about it.

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