Bhopal on Friday about a dozen Muslim jail inmates were injured,
eight of them seriously, when they were allegedly beaten up by
policemen in the lockup of the district court where they had been
brought up for hearing.
The injured prisoners had to be taken
to hospital for treatment.
The prisoners alleged that
they were abused and brutally beaten up in the lockup by batons.
They claimed that when they asked for
water for “Wuzu” ablution to perform “Namaz” (prayers) in the
evening and some eatables about half an hour before “Aftaar”
(breaking of Muslim fast) the policemen refused and reportedly made
objectionable remarks about Ramzan. When they protested the remarks
vociferously, the policemen allegedly hit them. In the melee that
ensued some of the prisoners sustained head injuries.
This angered the prisoners and they refused to leave the lockup
inside the court to be taken back to jail. They staged “dharna”
(sit-in) in the lockup inside the court premises. They insisted that
they would not budge until media personnel were allowed inside the
lockup so that they could narrate their plight and the inhuman
behavior of policemen.
The melodrama reportedly lasted for
nearly four hours. In all 131 jail inmates were later taken back to
jail in vehicles.
It is interesting to note that non-Muslim prisoners supported the
fasting Muslim colleagues against the police high-handedness.
The prisoners alleged that two
policemen were abusive towards those observing fast during Ramzan
and hurt their religious sentiments. Almost all the prisoners
together with those who were observing fast blamed the two policemen
for the situation.
They alleged that policemen of
district police line brutally beat them and also made objectionable
comments. They raised slogans against constables Arun Malik and Amar
Singh in particular. The jail inmates also alleged that they were
not allowed to meet their kin and guards of police line forced them
However, the police officials have refuted the claims of the
prisoners and said that the injuries had been self-inflicted. They
banged their heads against the walls of the lockup and in the
process their faces got splashed with blood, they asserted.
Officials maintained that the injured ones have been admitted in the
hospital while a case in this regard would be registered after
Meanwhile, it may be stated here that a few days back there was a
serious altercation between advocates of Bhopal district court and
policemen leading to manhandling of some advocates. The working of
the Bhopal district court is at standstill since advocates,
thereafter, are on strike demanding action against the erring
policemen who misbehaved with them.