'Transferring Vasant Dhoble will not solve issue'

With ACP Vasant Dhoble’s hasty transfer this weekend, many hoteliers and small-scale entrepreneurs are heaving huge sighs of relief. Emboldened by the fact that the notorious cop is no longer lurking in the corner to fall upon them, many have spoken out, complaining that the police department on the whole has been exceptionally lenient towards the man, even though numerous complaints were brought to their notice.

Cops stood guard as agitated hawkers gathered outside V N Desai Hospital at Santacruz, following the death of a hawker during the raid organised by ACP Vasant Dhoble on Friday. Dhoble was transferred over the weekend. Pic/Satyajit Desai

One such vindicated hotelier is Shakil Bhure, co-owner of the Moghul Sarai restaurant whose 64-year-old father Yusuf Ghulamnabi Bhure was allegedly hit by Dhoble on his ear. The owner had lodged many complaints regarding the act of violence, which he claimed fell on deaf ears. Yusuf Ghulamnabi Bhure had even moved court seeking justice, but the judgment had been passed in favour of Dhoble.

“If action have been taken long back, this situation would have never arisen,” he said, referring to the death of a hawker on Friday during one of Dhoble’s raids.
“When we had complained of his high-handedness, the department was not ready to accept it. If this action was taken long back in December 2011, this innocent hawker wouldn’t have died this way. Transferring him will not solve the issue. He might continue doing the same in some other area. He should be removed from the department or put to such work where he can help improve the department ,” said Bhure.

“If we are running a business illegally or do not have the required licences, cops have all the authority to shut our establishment or fine us. But who has given them the power to hit people? Can you imagine a man dying of shock just because Dhoble has arrived? This is a state of Talibanisation,” said the entrepreneur.

Echoing his view was Rahul Kanal, who had raised a mighty protest during Dhoble’s moral policing days, crusading against the action the ACP took to curb Mumbai’s nightlife. “There is no point transferring him to another area. He should be suspended immediately and an inquiry should be initiated. But unfortunately, the government thinks that transferring him is the only way. Why can’t they go aggressively after his gruesome act? Why is the government showing so much leniency?” asked Kanal.

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