In a last-ditch attempt to convince the policemen, the City Police Commissioner B Dayananda told them that their grievances would be addressed and the government would support their genuine demands.
Addressing more than 1,500 police personnel at the Firing Range at the foothills of Chamundi on Friday, the police officer assured the cops to look into their demands and requested them to be on duty on June 4.
Hearing the commissioner, however, several police constables said that the officer was following the state government order of preventing the protest.
The proposed mass leave personnel on June 4 announced by announced by a rattled the state government the protest and the home ministry has issued the instructions to all department heads in the districts and city Commissionerates to curb the protest at any cost.
Such a mass protest has probably never been heard of in the history of the police force anywhere in the country. Police are not allowed to protest under the ESMA Act. The protest is spearheaded by Akhila Karnataka Police Mahasangha. The Mahasangha is headed by Venugopal Shashidhar who has been arrested on charges of sedition in Bengaluru.
Usually, police parades are held at the Parade Grounds. But on Friday, probably for the first time, a full-fledged parade was held at the Firing Range. Addressing the police force, Commissioner Dayananda asked them to convey their grievances at the station level. “Give your representation in writing
and committees will be formed to address the issues,” he said. He added that the station officers, inspectors, ACPs and DCPs would look into their day
to day problems and there was no question of harassing anyone.
POLICEMEN NOT CONVINCED
Soon after the commissioner left the Firing Range, policemen, on condition of anonymity, said that they could not be convinced by the officer’s words.
“The state government has exerted pressure on higher officers to curb the protest at any cost. This is just a temporary measure to ward off the protest threat. We are convinced that our grievances would not be met,” said a police constable who was unable to hide his displeasure.
“Even if we complain against our inspectors and higher officers, what is the guarantee that our problems would be addressed as they themselves will be in the committees,” he added. Another constable said: “It will take a minimum of 6 months to one year for our application to even reach the higher officials. Forget about the problem getting solved.”
FAMILY MEMBERS TO PROTEST
As the policemen cannot take leave fearing disciplinary action, their family members would stage protests in front of the police stations, commissioner’s office and SP office. “Our wives and children would demonstrate in front of the police stations,” a police constable said.