Updated: September 8, 2020 7:22:49 am
INVESTIGATING the circumstances around the death of 24-year-old Faizan in the Northeast Delhi riots after he, along with two other men, were allegedly made to sing the national anthem and Vande Mataram by a group of policemen, the Delhi Police Crime Branch has questioned a policeman posted with the Delhi Armed Police, The Indian Express has learnt.
A video of the incident first came to light February 25, showing three men, including the victim, writhing in pain on the ground even as a group of police personnel stood by, purportedly telling them to sing the national anthem, and, occasionally, hitting them with their lathis.
Families of two other men seen in the clip had told The Indian Express that the video was shot at Kardam Puri on the evening of February 24. Faizan, a resident of Kardam Puri, succumbed to injuries at LNJP Hospital. Dr Kishore Singh, medical director of the hospital, had said: “He was admitted to the neurosurgery ward on February 25 and died three days later. He had suffered gunshot wounds and was critical.”
Faizan’s mother and sisters had confirmed that he was one of the men in the video clip.
While the video was recorded by one of the police personnel, another video of the same incident, shot from afar, is what helped police in their investigation, sources said.
After an FIR was filed on February 28 at Bhajanpura police station, the case was transferred to the Crime Branch, which first checked how many personnel were deployed in that neighbourhood from which police stations.
While the incident had taken place at 66 Foota Road, which comes under the jurisdiction of Bhajanpura police station, investigators found that no personnel from that station were deployed in the area at the time.
“Investigators found that the location was surrounded by areas that fall under the jurisdiction of other police stations, and there was a strong possibility that personnel from a different location had arrived at the scene during the riots,” a senior police officer said.
Sources said that while scanning the video recorded from afar, investigators noticed that one of the personnel was “carrying tear smoke munitions (TSM)”.
“Whenever any force goes out for deployment, personnel are issued TSM under their name from their units. The investigating officer checked the register of forces from outside the area to verify entries made while issuing TSMs that day. On the basis of the footage and one of the entries, they identified a personnel posted with the DAP. He was called in for questioning by the Special Investigation Team (SIT) at their office at Darya Ganj. While he claims he was not involved, further investigations are underway,” the source said.
Police also believe he is the one who also shot the video of the men lying on the ground, the source said.
The footage captured from afar shows at least six personnel, and investigating officers are trying to zero in on the rest, the source said.
The Indian Express called and messaged Special CP (Crime) Praveer Ranjan as well as Delhi Police PRO Dr Eish Singhal seeking their comments on the development. No response was received.
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