A video shot in Jodhpur, shared widely on social media, drew outrage after it showed a police constable kneeling on the neck of a person for not wearing a facemask.
In the video, which was shot Thursday, one Mukesh Kumar Prajapat was outdoors without a facemask, which is mandatory in public spaces in light of the coronavirus outbreak. According to the police, two constables pulled him up for not wearing a mask. However, Prajapat allegedly hit them, and the constables then tried to control him.
Rajasthan’s #GeorgeFloyd moment: Police kneeling neck of a man who thrashed cop, threatened to kill them, in Jodhpur on Thursday evening. #BlackLivesMatter #blacklifematters @PoliceRajasthan pic.twitter.com/Z73HeG1zVL
— Rakesh Goswami (@DrRakeshGoswami) June 5, 2020
Jodhpur’s DCP (West) Priti Chandra said, “The person was without a mask… If someone is not wearing a mask then corona will spread fast. So a constable clicked the person’s photo when he was not wearing a mask. And when the constable approached him and inquired why he was not wearing a mask, the person immediately pulled up a mask and threatened them that he will gouge their eyes.
“So the policemen called for a jeep from the police station, but before it could arrive the man started slapping and punching both the constables — there are videos of the same. We have filed an FIR against him and arrested him,” Chandra said.
Have attached full video shot at First Poolia, Kamla Nehru Nagar Ext, Jodhpur. The pic posted by you does not depict correct story. pic.twitter.com/UndjH3QKIX
— Dr Hilaluddin (@Hilalud56886934) June 5, 2020
Jodhpur police said the man has two previous cases against him, including one filed by Prajapat’s father last year.
The video showed Kumar aggressively resisting the policemen and engaging in a fistfight. It also showed a constable kneeling on him for a few seconds.
Chandra defended the constables’ actions, saying Prajapat man began punching the policemen as soon as they’d release him. “Dono constables daba ke baithenge isko, maar thori khayenge (Both constables will subdue him, they would not be beaten up),” the DCP said.
“If a policeman is being slapped and punched while in uniform then it is embarrassing for the entire society. I feel the society should be mature enough to realise that if a man is in uniform then it shouldn’t mean that the person should be criticised without a reason…” the DCP said.
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