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Child lifting: Rumour mongers to be booked under NSA, says UP DGP

twitter-logo PTI        Last Updated: August 29, 2019  | 17:52 IST

(Eds: Combines related stories, adds background) Lucknow, Aug 29 (PTI) Alarmed over reports of mob violence against suspected child lifters in various parts of the state, the Uttar Pradesh police has decided to use the stringent National Security Act against those spreading rumours on the issue. The orders came Wednesday night from Director General of Police OP Singh, who said 82 people have been arrested for spreading rumours about child theft and spreading violence. Singh said authorities will invoke the NSA against the rumour mongers. Under the Act, the government can detain a person for as long as it wants and the authorities need not disclose the grounds of detention. A health department team was attacked by a violent mob of around 150 people in Fatehpur district on Wednesday after they suspected the officials to be child lifters. Ten people, including two policemen, were injured when a group of locals pelted stones at them in Khesahan village under Ghazipur police station area, SP Ramesh said. On Tuesday in Sambhal, a 40-year-old man escorting his seven-year-old ailing nephew was lynched by a mob on suspicion of he being a child lifter. The same day, six persons were arrested for thrashing a 50-year-old man on the same suspicion in Kanpur Dehat. A police official said Billu, a resident of Raigarh in Chhattisgarh, was allegedly begging when Swarooppur villagers mistook him for a child lifter and beat him up badly. In the neighbouring Kanpur, a mob beat up two beggars in Bhim Nagar, suspecting them for child lifters. Police rescued them and they were being treated at a nearby hospital. On Sunday, a 50-year-old woman was brutally manhandled in Etah on suspicion of being a child lifter. With a rapid increase in the number of such incidents, several district police chiefs have issued advisories to people to not pay heed to rumours and desist from taking law in their hands. Adopting a tough approach, the DGP asked people to not become a partner in this crime. "Today I want to draw your attention towards a serious issue. Anti-social elements are spreading rumours about child theft in different parts of the state, which has led to violence. In the probe into the incidents of violence, there is an angle of child theft. "My appeal to you is do not believe in the rumours or take the law in your own hands and be a partner in the violence," Singh said in a video, tweeted by UP Police. "If you come to know about any such incident, immediately inform on Dial-100 number," he said. PTI SAB SMI SMI ABH ABH

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