On a day when his government faced strong protests in the Uttar Pradesh Legislative Assembly over police encounters in the state, Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath asserted that criminals in the state should be answered in a language they understood. Speaking at an event in Gorakhpur on Thursday, the UP CM said, “Suraksha ki guarantee har vyakti ko milni chahiye. Lekin jo log samaj ka mahaul bigadna chaahte hain, jinlogon ki bandook ki nok pe vishwas hai, unhe bandook ki hi bhasha mein jawab dena chahiye. Yeh main poori spashta ke saath prashaasan se kahoonga (Everyone should be guaranteed security, but those who want to disturb peace of the society and believe in the gun, should be given the answer in the language of the gun itself. I would tell the administration, that there is no need to worry on this)”
The Adityanath government which came power last year has faced criticism over the staggering number of police encounters in the state in the recent past, killing 38 alleged criminals since March 2017. According to data sourced from DGP Headquarters, as many as 1,142 encounters were recorded between March 20, 2017 and January 31 this year. In the last 25 days itself, eight people were killed in 60 encounters across districts.
The matter has raised concerns in various quarters. On November 22, the National Human Rights Commission also issued a notice to the state government over 19 encounters in six months. Opposition members too have raised the issue in Assembly and Parliament. On Thursday, Samajwadi Party legislators carried placards with the slogan “nirdoshon ka farzi encounter bandh karo (stop killing innocents in fake encounters)”. The Opposition members also threw balloons and paper balls at the Governor while protesting against a series of issues, including the police encounters.
Hitting out at the Opposition, Adityanath said on Thursday that their behaviour in the Assembly was despicable. “This type of behaviour shatters the parliamentary tradition … Paper balls were thrown, balloons were flown. The use of foul language for the governor by the Samajwadi Party members in the presence of their leaders is indeed unparliamentary and an despicable act,” he said. The behaviour pointed to the anarchy that was there in the state under the earlier rule, Adityanath added.
“These people are yet to come out of their mindset of anarchy — which they had allowed in the state — and they do not want the House to be free from that anarchy,” he said.