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6-year-old girl makes Akhilesh crack the whip

Last updated on: April 19, 2013 12:55 IST

6-year-old girl makes Akhilesh crack the whip

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Sharat Pradhan in Lucknow

After a year-long complacence, Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav has at last started cracking the whip on those whose acts of omission or commission were giving a bad name to his government.

Apart from the extremely poor policing, worsened by rampant corruption at various ranks, what had discredited Akhilesh's governance was the selection of officials largely by his peers on considerations other than merit.

However, realization appears to have dawned on the 39-year-old chief minister who on Thursday night ordered suspension of as many as 21 officials including four sub-divisional magistrates, 12 policemen and four forest officials for dereliction of duty, irresponsible behaviour and for committing irregularities in official working.

Those suspended include a junior IAS officer, a divisional forest officer and 17 policemen.

Akhilesh is stated to have got into action no sooner he saw television clips showing virtual terror being unleashed by policemen on women and children protesting against alleged rape and brutal killing of a 6-year-old girl, whose body was found in a garbage dump in Aligarh.

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Photographs: Samajwadi Party Facebook page

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People took to streets because the cops had refused to register an FIR, when the girl's parent went to the police station about their missing daughter. Her battered body was discovered two days later.

When people of the locality staged a demonstration, the Aligarh police have them a taste of their wrath by resorting to lathicharge even on old women and little children.

No sooner than visuals of the police barbarism began flashing on channels, the chief minister promptly ordered action against the guilty officials.

"Enough is enough," he was understood to have told his close confidante before he got cracking.

The first to come under the CM's axe was Circle Officer Deputy Superintendent of Police A K Singh and two constables who were seen using brute 'khakhi' force on unarmed women.

And what followed was not just action against the erring officials in Aligarh but also against some others who were responsible for similar outrageous acts in other districts. Thus apart from ordering suspension of seven cops including the SHO of Lucknow's Hasanganj police station where a 24-year-old youth was beaten to death a day earlier, leading to violent street protests and demonstrations in the state capital

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Tags: SHO , Aligarh , FIR , CM , Lucknow

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6-year-old girl makes Akhilesh crack the whip

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In another action, the station officer and a sub-inspector were arrested in Bijnore and a woman constable was suspended because they not only refused to register FIR of a minor gangrape victim, but also beat her up in the police station.

The chief minister further ordered suspension of four SDMs for committing grave irregularities in the public distribution system. Through a separate order, four forest officials, including the DFO of Najibabad, were suspended for illegal felling of trees.

However, action was still awaited in the case of harassment of a minor rape victim, who was kept under illegal confinement by a station officer at Sarojini Nagar police station and was forced to implicating her own uncle, because the real culprit had allegedly bought the cop. The truth came to light when the girl made a statement before a juvenile court earlier this week.

Even though a little late in the day, Akhilesh's actions were lauded, even though many of his admirers felt that "his hands were still tied."

Says a Samajwadi Party activist on the condition of anonymity, "what can the poor well-meaning chief minister do when several forces were creating stumbling blocks in his path; after all crooks in the government were thriving only because of the patronage extended by certain parallel power centres including a top politician and a key official in the CM's personal secretariat."

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Photographs: Samajwadi Party Facebook page

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