A video of Sikh man being manhandled by the West Bengal police during BJP’s Nabanna Chalo rally in Howrah sparked massive controversy after it went viral on social media.
Issuing a statement the police claimed that the person was carrying a firearm and that his headgear “had fallen off automatically in the scuffle that ensued”.
The BJP accused the Trinamool Congress government of hurting the sentiments of Sikhs with cricketer Harbhajan Singh urging Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee to take a look into the matter.
Pagri had fallen off automatically in the scuffle
“The concerned person was carrying firearms in yesterday’s protest. The Pagri had fallen off automatically in the scuffle that ensued, without any attempt to do so by our officer. It is never our intention to hurt the sentiments of any community,” said West Bengal Police in a tweet.
The Sikh man was identified as 43-year-old Balwinder Singh, a resident of Bhatinda.
Singh, a former soldier of the Indian Army, is currently working as a private security officer hired by a BJP leader.
As per the police, a loaded pistol was recovered from him and its licence is valid till January next year.
The Sikh man was carrying a licensed weapon
In another tweet, the WB Police shared a photo of Singh with his turban on saying, “West Bengal Police respects all religions. The officer specifically asked him to put his Pagri back before the arrest. The attached photo has been clicked right before he was escorted to the Police Station. We remain committed to our duty to uphold law and order in the state.”
Reacting to the incident, BJP national general secretary Kailash Vijayvargiya slammed the TMC saying that even brave soldiers who had served the nation are not spared in the TMC’s regime.
Demanding severe punishment of the guilty policemen, Vijayvargiya said that humiliation of such brave people is sad in Mamata Raj.