Delhi Police took a decision to suspend a constable who was involved in vandalizing carts of the vegetable vendors in central Delhi’s Nehru Nagar, amid an ongoing countrywide lockdown to check the spread of coronavirus.
The incident took place on Wednesday morning. The action against the constable was taken after a video of him overturning at last three vegetable carts was widely shared on social media.
According to the police, Rajbir, who is posted at Ranjit Nagar police station, was out in the area on Wednesday when he saw people had gathered in Nehru Nagar around some vegetable vendors. He then allegedly approached and asked the vegetable vendors to vacate the area, but they resisted. Following an argument on whether they’re allowed to sell vegetables amid the lockdown or not, Rajbir vandalized their carts and threatened them to leave the area, police said.
The video of the incident later surfaced on social media and was widely circulated. The video shows Rajbir, who is not wearing his uniform, armed with a lathi (wooden stick). He is also seen covering his face with a mask. The video shows him walking up to one vegetable vendor and overturning his vegetable-laden cart on the road. The policeman then walks up to two other carts parked next to each other and is seen doing the same. Although many people are seen passing by in the video, no one is seen intervening. Rajbir then leaves the area, the video shows.
Deputy commissioner of police (central) Sanjay Bhatia said the matter was brought to their knowledge and immediate action was taken to ensure that a strict message is sent across that such actions will not be tolerated. “Constable Rajbir of police station Ranjit Nagar has been suspended for misconduct. Others in the force have been sensitised in this regard,” the DCP said.
Before the 21 days, lockdown came into force, the government had made clear that suppliers and sellers of groceries, vegetables, milk, medicines came under the ambit of essential services, and therefore, stores housing these will remain open and workers employed with these outlets will report to work.