Kerala Kaumudi Online
Friday, 14 June 2024 8.42 AM IST

Government issues instructions to police: Lathicharge on protesters is illegal


THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: The government says it is illegal to hit protesters with lathis. According to Section 79 of the Police Manual, lathis can be used for defense as part of law enforcement. Beating protesters including on the head is illegal. DYSP will investigate complaints of injuries in lathi charges. The government also stated that the drill training given to the police since colonial times to disperse violent mobs has been scientifically modified to suit modern democratic society.

The Home (E) Department issued the order on Wednesday in response to Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan's reply to a question raised by opposition MLAs in the Assembly regarding the beating of the Youth Congress district president and women workers during the Alappuzha Collectorate march.

On November 8, 'Kerala Kaumudi' published a report pointing out that beating protesters' heads with lathis is inhumane and contrary to police training. The National Human Rights Commission, which intervened in the 'Kerala Kaumudi' news had directed the DGP to take action against the policemen who beat protesters on the head.

During the march of KSU to Minister R Bindu's residence, a policeman from A R Camp hit two people, including KSU leader Nazia, on the head and face. The police did not obey court orders not to hit protesters on the head. Lokanath Behra, when he was DGP had suggested that lashing below the waist should be sufficient. Even after firing water cannons and tear gas, lathi charges should not be done except in cases of violence.

Case can be filed if hit on head

A case can be filed against under Sections 323 and 341 of the IPC if the police break unarmed protesters' heads or injure them.

No force shall be used except to arrest or disperse a violent mob and only for that purpose. Provoked force should also not be used.

If the activists cause a public nuisance, they can be arrested. If they attack or try to kill the police, they can be subdued by force.

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