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Guj HC asks seeks FIR against police for assaulting agitators

twitter-logoPTI | February 1, 2019 | Updated 21:12 IST

Ahmedabad, Feb 1 (PTI) The Gujarat High Court Friday directed a magistrate's court in Bhavnagar district to register FIRs against policemen accused of brutally thrashing villagers who were agitating against limestone mining. Justice Sonia Gokani asked the Judicial Magistrate at Talaja to lodge first information reports against all the police officers accused of custodial torture of 54 persons, including women, from Bambhor village. The HC passed the order after going through medical reports and statements given to the magistrate by the victims. The villagers have demanded that a committee be formed to investigate the violence, and Bhavnagar District Superintendent of Police P L Mal be suspended. The high court will hear the case next on February 11. The villagers alleged in the petition that Bhavnagar Police arrested around 90 people for taking out a peaceful march against limestone mining by a private firm at Bambhor village on January 2. Around 50 to 70 male police personnel from Datha Police Station beat them mercilessly at the behest of senior police officials, which led to "fracture in the hands, legs, serious injuries on the spinal cord", they alleged. The police did not take the injured villagers, including women, to hospital and kept them in custody till they were produced in the court on January 3, the petition said. In the magistrate's court, the 54 agitators complained of custodial torture by policemen, allegedly in the presence of Superintendent of Police P L Mal. The agitators were granted bail on January 10 on the condition that they will not go near the mining site. The petition claimed that the Talaja magistrate recorded their statements about custodial torture and forwarded it to the sessions court as per the procedure, but no action was taken for three weeks, which compelled them to move the high court. PTI PJT PD KRK RHL

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