Don't take action against personnel till enquiry is complete, say retired officers

Nitin Rawat

New Delhi, Nov 7 (PTI) Retired officers of the Delhi Police on Thursday wrote to Lt Governor Anil Baijal and its chief Amulya Patnaik, terming the recent standoff between lawyers and police as 'demoralising' and urged them not to take 'coercive' action against its personnel till the completion of the judicial enquiry.

Expressing concern over the clash that took place between the Delhi Police personnel and lawyers at the Tis Hazari court on Saturday, the Delhi Police Retired Gazetted Officers Association (DPRGOA) said the top brass should 'adequately assure' its personnel of their complete support.

'Senior officers of the organisation may encourage and boost the morale of the force by adequate assurances to them that they have complete support of their seniors and that the rule of law will prevail,' DPRGOA president Karnal Singh said in a statement.

Singh, a former IPS officer, headed the Enforcement Directorate and had several stints in the Delhi Police.

The letter comes two days after thousands of Delhi Police personnel laid a siege outside the Delhi Police headquarters.

The protests were triggered by the two attacks on their colleagues, one on Monday outside Saket District Court and another on Saturday at the Tis Hazari Courts Complex after a parking dispute between an on-duty policeman and a lawyer. At least 20 security personnel and several advocates being injured in the clash.

Ordering a judicial inquiry by one of its retired judges into the clash, the Delhi High court at a special sitting on November 3 suspended a police official and transferred two senior police officials during pendency of the investigations.

The Delhi High Court on Sunday directed the Delhi Police commissioner to transfer Special Commissioner Sanjay Singh and Additional DCP Harinder Singh during pendency of the investigation. It had also asked not to take coercive action against the lawyers for the FIRs filed in the Tis Hazari court clash.

'The direction of no coercive action against lawyers requires to be amended to no coercive action against anyone till the completion of the enquiry. The suspension and transfer of police officers should be challenged as no action has been ordered against erring lawyers,' the letter said.

'Initially, no case was registered on these incidents against the erring lawyers and the whole episode had a demoralising effect on the police force throughout the country,' Singh said.

He also urged Baijal and Patnaik not to take departmental action against those officials who had gathered at the PHQ (Police Headquarters) for silent protest with their families to apprise the senior officers of their grievances.

'It needs sympathetic consideration,' Singh said.

Compensation and proper medical aid as well as expenditure should be provided to the injured police officers and no coercive action should be taken against any police officer till the judicial enquiry is completed, the letter stated.

The Delhi Police and Lt Governor on Tuesday had assured compensation to the injured police personnel. PTI NIT NIT TDSTDS