The Delhi police, which had been given a time of two weeks by the Supreme Court to explain its midnight action against supporters of Yoga guru Baba Ramdev, has claimed that it was not a lathi-charge.
The Delhi Police, which reports directly to the Union Home Ministry under P Chidambaram, will submit its response to the Supreme Court notice in the afternoon, the last day according to the time-line set by the Court.
The affidavit also says that they moved in after getting tip-off that Baba Ramdev may be hurt by extremists while at the venue.
The Delhi police also claimed that they acted only after Baba Ramdev started inciting the 25,000 people who had turned up at Delhi’s Ramlila grounds two weeks ago.
Government’s own justification of the episode has ranged from ‘Baba was under danger’ to ‘Baba cheated us’ to ‘Baba may have sparked off Hindu-Muslim riots in Old Delhi.’
It is believed that the government moved in to break up the protest after the Baba went back on a private assurance that he will not push too hard with his demands. However, Baba explained that in the list of assurances he was given, there was no mention of anti-black money actions — his core demand.
Baba broke his fast this week in Haridwar.
The episode has gone down as one of the most controversial police actions of recent times, outraging nearly all intellectuals and democratic leaders.
Government believes that Baba’s protest was part of a major scheme by the Rashtriya Swayasevak Sangh, RSS, a Hindu group, to topple it and force mid-term elections.