Karnataka police protest: Two association leaders arrested, DG says no one applied for leave

Bangalore: Director General and Inspector General of Police (DG & IGP) Om Prakash on Thursday said that two people were arrested for making an attempt to instigate policemen to go on mass leave on June 4. Om Prakash said the two persons had used social media to instigate policemen to go on leave en masse in support of their demands.

Speaking with media persons at a hurriedly convened press conference, Om Prakash said that leaders Shashidhar Venugopal at Yelahanka in Bengaluru and Basavaraj in Hubli were arrested for trying to create unrest among the policemen who are known for discipline. “For the last one week, some outside elements and rowdy elements have been trying to create unrest among the policemen but in vain. I am happy to inform you that no one has applied for leave. A few dismissed police constables and rowdy elements tried to create an adverse atmosphere in police department but policemen as a disciplined force did not listen to them.” Om Prakash said.

According to reliable sources, a case with crime number 160/16 under Sections 124A 166 r/w 109 IPC along with Section 4 Police Forces (Restriction of Rights) Act 1966, Section 4 Police (Incitement to Disaffection) Act 1922, Section 5 KESMA r/w 120B of IPC has been registered at Yelahanka New Town Police Station and A1 Shashidhar Venugopal has been arrested and produced before the court which has remanded the accused to judicial custody till June 16.

Meanwhile, the DG & IGP said that public need not worry about law and order on June 4 since no policeman has applied for leave on that day. “Some of the policemen assured the senior police officers orally and some of them have assured in writing stating that they are not taking leave on June 4. As per my assessment there will be no protest by policemen on June 4,” he said.

Demands are not new
Elaborating on the measures taken to redress grievances of policemen, the DG & IGP said the demands are not new and were pending for quite a long time. “The demands include filling up vacancies, housing, shift system are not new. These demands were pending for quite a long time. We have been trying our best to redress these grievances and we will continue to do our best to meet the genuine demands of policemen,” he said.

Police under KESMA
The Karnataka government on May 31 by notification has included police service under the Karnataka Essential Services Maintenance Act 2013 as the police service is an essential service required towards public safety. The primary duty of the police is protection of life and property of the citizens and detection of crime. In case, personnel working under Karnataka State Police force refuse to discharge their basic duties, it will harm the public order and safety of the public which shall adversely affect the society in large and disturb the law and order in the state.

The Act provides for arrest without a warrant or any person who is reasonably suspected of having committed any offence under the Act. All offences under the Act are non-bailable offences and are punishable with imprisonment of a term of one year or fine of Rs 5,000 or both.