Country’s top rights body “Peoples Union for Civil Liberties” on Sunday condemned “the brutal manner” by which the Delhi Police “forcibly arrested” the women wrestlers and demanded that strict action be taken against those police functionaries who indulged in “illegal action and brutal use of force” against peaceful protestors
Security personnel detain wrestler Vinesh Phogat during wrestlers' protest march towards new Parliament building, in New Delhi, Sunday, May 28, 2023. PTI Photo
Country’s top rights body 'Peoples Union for Civil Liberties' on Sunday condemned “the brutal manner” by which the Delhi Police “forcibly arrested” the women wrestlers and demanded that strict action be taken against those police functionaries who indulged in “illegal action and brutal use of force” against peaceful protestors.
In a statement, the PUCL President Kavita Srivastava said that the strong-arm tactics used by the Bharatiya Janata Party-led Central Government through the Delhi police against the women wrestlers ironically “exposes the lie of the BJP government as being committed towards justice for women, protecting their dignity and democratic rights.”
“The BJP Government and the Delhi police showed its true anti-women and anti-democratic character by preventing and trying to crush what has been a very peaceful, violence-free and orderly protest of women wrestlers whose only request is to enforce the law against a person who has sexually inflicted violence on them, including ensuring the mandatory arrest of the perpetrator under POCSO.
“It is very much a part of the fundamental right of the women wrestlers to peacefully demand accountability and express their protest against the inaction of the Delhi police under the Ministry of Home Affairs to arrest Brij Bhushan Sharan Singh. The women wrestlers have been demanding action since January, 2023. No justice came their way, despite being subjected to two illegal Complaint Committees regarding sexual harassment. It was only thereafter that on 23rd April, 2023 they were forced to make their grievances public by staging their protest in Jantar Mantar. The deathly silence of the ruling Modi regime continues to date.
“The reluctance to act on the part of the Modi government to enforce the law against wrongdoers from its own ranks is made clear when we see that the FIR itself came to be lodged only when the wrestlers filed a petition in the SC and the CJI’s Bench ordered registration of a FIR.
“What is indicative and best exemplifies the authoritarian, anti-women and anti-democratic mindset of the Central Government and the Delhi police to the citizen’s fundamental right to protest is the action of the Delhi police who dubbed the protest of the women wrestlers as constituting ANTI-NATIONAL act, as it was marring the day when the PM was inaugurating the new Parliament!”
The top rights body called upon all citizens groups, women’s, farmers, students, workers, lawyers and other groups to continue being united and demand justice for the agitating women wrestlers and unequivocally condemn “the brute force used by the Delhi police” to arrest the women wrestlers and others and dismantle their protest site.
The PUCL demanded that the wrestlers protest site be restored and they be allowed to peacefully agitate by exercising their democratic rights. “PUCL demands that all criminal cases registered today, against the women wrestlers and activists be dropped and Brijbhushan Sharan Singh be immediately arrested.