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‘Action must be taken’: Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi on UP cop’s ‘go to Pak’ rant at CAA protesters

The violence that broke out in many parts of the state between December 19 and 21 has claimed as many as 21 lives.

SNS | New Delhi |

As a video of an Uttar Pradesh police officer asking a group of Muslims from violence-hit Meerut to go to Pakistan has gone viral and courted controversy, Union Minority Affairs Minister Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi has said “action must be taken” against the policeman.

Superintendent of Police (City) Akhilesh Narayan Singh, dressed in riot gear, was seen in a purported video making extremely communal statements in a Muslim locality on December 20, where violent protests against the Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) erupted after the Friday prayers.

“If it is true that he made that statement in the video, then it is condemnable. Immediate action must be taken against him,” news agency ANI quoted Naqvi as saying.

“Violence at any level, be it by police or by mob, is unacceptable. It can’t be a part of a democratic country. Police should take care that those who are innocent should not suffer,” the Minority Affairs Minister said.

The viral video accessed by NDTV shows the cop threatening a few Muslim men wearing skull caps and black and green band.

The officer is seen saying, “Where will you go? I will set this lane right now that you have given me this chance. (Kahan jaoge? Is gali ko main theek karoonga).” the officer tells the men standing there.

Expressing his anger over people wearing black and green bands, Singh is further heard saying, “That’s fine (offering Namaz). But these black and blue badges you people are wearing, tell them to go to Pakistan. (Nahin woh to theek hai jo kaali patti aur neeli patti baandh rahe ho unko keh do Pakistan chale jaayein).

“If you do not want to live here then go away. You come here but you sing praises about somewhere else? (Desh main agar nahin rehne ka man hai to chale jao bhaiya. Aaoge yahan aur haoge kahin aur ka).” he continues to rant in the viral video accessed by NDTV.

The officer was further seen threatening the same men saying that he will “throw every man from every house in jail”.

Clarifying his stand, SP Akhilesh Narayan Singh told reporters that some boys, after seeing the police, “started raising pro-Pakistani slogans and began running”.

“I told them if you raise Pakistan zindabad slogans and hate India so much that you pelt stones then go to Pakistan. We are trying to identify them,” he said.

Earlier, speaking on the purported video yesterday, ADG Meerut, Prashant Kumar told news agency ANI that “stones were being pelted, anti-India and pro-neighbouring country slogans were being raised” by the protesters there.

Defending the police officer, the ADG  had said that the situation was extremely tense and added that “PFI pamphlets were being distributed” despite all the appeals by the police as well as religious leaders.

Kumar further said that “if the situation was normal then the choice of words would have been better”.

“…but that day the situation was extremely volatile, our officers showed a lot of restraint, there was no firing by police,” he said.

The violence that broke out in many parts of the state between December 19 and 21 has claimed as many as 21 lives.

Meerut witnessed some of the worst incidents of violence during protests against the amended citizenship law and the National Register of Citizens (NRC). Around six people were killed in protests.

The Uttar Pradesh Police has only accepted that firing took place in Bijnor. But video clips that have surfaced suggest firing took place at many places in the state.

Although many of the bodies of those killed in violence bore gunshot wounds, the state police insisted that they did not shoot anything other than plastic pellets and rubber bullets.

In an attempt to justify its action, the state police has released a series of photographs and videos showing two men firing at cops during protests against the controversial law.

The controversial Citizenship Amendment Act provides for granting citizenship to persecuted minorities from Pakistan, Afghanistan and Bangladesh and has evoked widespread protests, especially in Delhi, Uttar Pradesh and the northeast.