A day after an SHO was suspended following a BJP MLA's allegations of police manhandling him, a video clip has surfaced showing the legislator raising no objections when the officer charges him with tearing down his uniform and assaulting him.
SHO Anuj Kumar Saini was suspended Wednesday following Iglas MLA Rajkumar Sahyogi's allegation that he was manhandled at the Gonda police station by three policemen when he went there to protest a case filed against a Vishva Hindu Parishad (VHP) member.
The nearly three-minute clip, that appears to have been shot after the initial scuffle between the MLA and the policemen, purportedly shows the Gonda Station House Office, since suspended, asking Sahyogi as to why he assaulted him immediately on entering the police station.
"As soon as you entered the police station, you tore down my uniform and snatched my name badge before assaulting me," the SHO tells the MLA in the clip, which shows the two sitting across a table at the police station and talking, at times over each other.
Instead of contesting his charges, the MLA replies, "If you don't listen to my instructions and harass my party workers then what else shall I do?"
"How did you file a counter report against my man? I know you did it at the instance of an SP leader," he is heard telling the police officer.
The SHO kept asking the MLA repeatedly as to how he can assault him, drawing accusations from the legislator that the police officer indulged in corruption and never followed his instructions.
While senior officers are tight-lipped about the sequence of events, personnel at the police station claimed the MLA had gone there with some prominent leaders of the party.
After the scuffle broke out, the leaders accompanying the MLA left the police station and spread the word that Sahyogi had been detained, leading to his supporters gathering there, police sources alleged.
Senior police officers also rushed to the spot and prevented the situation from escalating, the sources said.
Agra Range Inspector General of Police Dipak Ratan said both the parties have accused each other of rowdy behaviour and that he would submit a report to the authorities soon.
While the Gonda SHO has been suspended, pending an inquiry, Additional SP (Rural) Atul Sharma has been transferred.
Meanwhile, Sahyogi expressed "full satisfaction at the follow-up action taken by the UP government" after the Wednesday's incident, but Opposition parties blamed him for the ugly spat.
Rashtriya Lok Dal national vice president Jayant Choudhury said the "high-handed" approach of the MLA resulted in this situation.
He said the incident is a sad commentary on the behaviour of the legislator and not good for the morale of the law-enforcement agencies.
The law and order in Uttar Pradesh is deteriorating rapidly and a spate of recent incidents are testimony to this fact, he alleged.
Choudhury Brijendra Singh, a former Congress MP who has also served as an MLA from Iglas, said "The incident was a reflection on dictatorial approach of the MLA."
On the part of BJP, its workers in the city held a protest at the Ramlila grounds and burnt an effigy of the police on Wednesday evening.
They demanded that all the policemen responsible for allegedly "humiliating" the MLA be suspended.
Earlier, the MLA had told reporters that on August 2 VHP member Rohit Varshney was beaten up by a man identified as Salim over a property dispute.
A case of assault was filed against Salim but a few days ago, a cross FIR was also filed in the case, the MLA had said, alleging that when he went to the police station to protest the case lodged against Varshney three policemen roughed him up.
Sahyogi had alleged that police have been "unduly influenced" to file the case against Varshney.
He has repeated this charge in the video clip too.