BHOPAL: A viral video showing a Gurudwara Granthi being assaulted and dragged by cops in full public view in Barwani district of Madhya Pradesh has triggered a political controversy.
The Shivraj Singh Chouhan-led BJP government has not only come under attack by opposition Congress, but the matter has also been raised by the president of BJP’s ally Shiromani Akali Dal, Sukhbir Singh Badal.
In the 50 seconds video, the Gurudwara Granthi identified as Prem Singh Chawla is seen in the feet of the cop, who then pulls Singh on road in full public view.
The same video also shows another cop push behind a turbaned man, who comes to save Prem Singh.
In the video, Chawla is seen shouting Sikh religion slogan — Wahe Guruji Ka Khalsa, Wahe Guruji ki Fateh — along with the appeal to save him from the assaulting cops.
State Congress spokesperson Narendra Saluja took to the twitter by sharing the video. “The concerned man Prem Singh Granthi has long been running a lock-keys shop near the Pulsood police outpost. He was beaten, his turban desecrated and then he was pulled through hair on the road in full public view by cops. This amounts to desecrating religious sentiments of Sikh community,” tweeted Saluja.
The SAD president and Ferozpur MP Sukhbir Singh Badal also tweeted the same video. “Too shocking for words! The barbaric and humiliating attack on Giani Prem Singh Granthi and other Sikhs in Madhya Pradesh is utterly inhuman and unacceptable. I urge CM Shivraj Singh Chouhan to set an example of punitive action against those who treat the sword of the nation with such contempt,” tweeted Badal.
The man shown in the video said that his name is Prem Singh Chawla. “I run a lock and keys shop and am also a Granthi at local Gurudwara in Pulsood town. Three cops, including female officer Kavita Kanesh, ASI Sitaram Bhatnagar and head constable Mohan Kamre came to my shop and asked me to remove the shop or else pay them money. I was unable to pay as I had only Rs 200le to pay them. They assaulted me and desecrated my turban, pulled me from my hair and beat me up when I resisted being lugged in their vehicle,” alleged Prem Singh.
The Barwani district SP Nimish Agrawal said that a probe by sub-divisional police officer police has been ordered. Prem Singh is accused in three cases of theft in the Jabalpur district of MP, he added.
Two cops — ASI Sitaram Bhatnagar and head constable Mohan Jamre — have been suspended.
“Our cops were on vehicle checking duty when they stopped two men, including Prem Singh riding a bike. While the riders didn’t have a driving licence, one of them was drunk. When the cops tried to bring them to police outpost, one of them created ruckus there,” said Agrawal.
The man Prem Singh hails from the Sikligar community (which historically made arms for the 10th Sikh Guru Gobind Singh’s army).
This story first appeared on newindianexpress.com