Malice in blunderland

Bhim Bassi, the gift that goes on giving:


New Delhi, Feb. 18: Delhi police today treated BJP MLA O.P. Sharma, accused of assaulting a CPI supporter at the Patiala House Courts on Monday, to a free vegetarian meal from a Connaught Place restaurant and several cups of coffee before arresting and letting him off within 15 minutes.

“He is a high-profile legislator and that’s why we ordered food from the restaurant. It was just a human gesture,” said an officer of Tilak Marg Police station where the hospitality was extended to Sharma, adding he “was not an ordinary person”.

The police station is barely 500 meters from the Patiala House Courts where Sharma was caught on camera thrashing rights activist and CPI supporter Ameeque Jamei. The violence had occurred ahead of JNU students’ union president Kanhaiya Kumar’s appearance, with several teachers, students and journalists also beaten up by a group of lawyers who yesterday brutally assaulted Kanhaiya.

Today, Sharma spent nearly eight hours at the police station – from 11.10am till 7pm – where he was made to sit in the chamber of the officer-in-charge. “We recorded his statement and arrested him but he was released on bail after 15 minutes,” said the officer.

Another officer said meals were not served to those called for questioning and that they were taken to a designated room for quizzing, not seated in the officer-in-charge’s chamber. “The person calls friends or family members for food, though tea/coffee are offered as a courtesy. Food is served only in the lock-up.”

Deputy commissioner Jatin Narwal – accused of being a mute spectator along with his teams during the violence on Monday and yesterday – visited the police station thrice today to ensure “Sharma was well taken care of”, an officer at the police station said. “I do not want to comment,” Narwal said, asked whether Sharma was being given VIP treatment.

But then, OP Sharma — merely a ruling party legislator and thug, not a scary student with the full might of various anti-India forces behind him — is obviously incapable of influencing the investigation and witnesses and all that.


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