Cop drama in the Capital: Inside the broken policing system

Delhi Police personnel display placards demanding justice in a clash against lawyers, during a protest in New Delhi. | PTI Photo

On the fast lanes of the national capital region (NCR), the common man fears running into two things the most — unending traffic jams and "thullas" (a north Indian slang used to refer to slack, corrupt and inefficient posse of cops).

While the efficiency of the police — or the lack of it — remains debatable, the same common man was at wit's end on November 5 as Delhi Police personnel took to the streets seeking protection. This was a result of an altercation between a cop and a lawyer over a wrongly parked vehicle outside the Tis Hazari Court Complex on November 2, that snowballed into a full-fledged battle. The ensuing clash left at least 20 police personnel and several lawyers injured. What followed was a court ordering the suspension of the police officers who ordered the firing and use of batons on lawyers. However, the police claim this was done only to control the mob.

Tension flared up again on November 4, after a video showing a group of lawyers hitting a policeman on a bike outside a district court in South Delhi, went viral. The outrage turned into disappointment after the police realised there was "no response" from top officials on punishing the perpetrators.

The Delhi Police personnel went on a strike for a day to highlight their plight. They called off the protest only after assurances from the Lieutenant Governor and the top-level police officers. An ex-gratia of ₹25,000 each was announced for the injured police personnel.

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