Surajpur (Chhatisgarh) [India], May 23 (ANI): The person seen being assaulted by former district collector of Surajpur in Chattisgarh on Sunday said he was returning home after delivering food to his hospitalised Covid-19 infected grandmother.
"Is a person even allowed to even provide food to a hospital admittee during a lockdown?" said Aman Mittal who was seen, in social media videos, of being slapped by Surajpur Collector Ranbir Sharma for allegedly violating Covid lockdown rules.
"My grandmother infected with COVID-19 was admitted to the hospital. I went there to give her food and to get her blood tested...When I was on my way back I was stopped and questioned on why I was roaming around. I took my purse out to show the receipt of the blood test and I was beaten once," Mittal said.
The man said he then approached the collector who asked him to leave before summoning him back and breaking his phone and charging him.
"I went to show the receipt to Collector sir who said it was fine and asked me to leave. He then turned around and took my mobile phone and suddenly without any reason threw it on the ground and slapped me. After that he told accompanying policemen to charge FIR on me," he further said.
"My mobile completely broke, They took my vehicle into custody and said that I will be put in lockup," he added.
"Is not a person even allowed to provide food to a hospital admittee during a lockdown? Such incidents should never happen. If some officers of lower rank act inhumanely we can approach their superiors. But if the one who is the highest official in the district is behaving is such manner, who should we go to?" he asked
Taking note of videos of the incident on social media, Chattisgarh chief minister Bupesh Baghel ordered action on the collector, who was then transferred from his post.
"Misbehaviour by an official is unacceptable. I am upset about this incident. I apologise to the youth and his family," Baghel had tweeted in Hindi.
Indian Administrative Service (IAS) officer Gaurav Kumar Singh was appointed as the new Collector of Surajpur replacing Ranbir Sharma.
Sharma had earlier issued a video statement explaining that Mittal had lied to officials and he did not possess proper documentation to justify his claim and that Mittal had misbehaved with officials.
The IAS officer also issued a public apology for his outburst stating that his intention was never to disrespect anybody.
Meanwhile, Aman Mittal has been charged under the Epidemic Diseases Act for violating Covid-19 norms. (ANI)