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National Security Adviser Ajit Doval. (HT)
National Security Adviser Ajit Doval. (HT)

NSA’s message to cops: Democracy fails if you fail to enforce laws

  • The police should not only be fair and credible but they should also be seen as fair and credible, says Doval
  • With the Delhi Police facing flak for not being able to address the growing unrest between anti- and pro-CAA protestors, Doval says the force requires a facelift to regain its reputation

NEW DELHI : As the Delhi Police picks up the pieces following the communal violence in north-east Delhi, National Security Adviser (NSA) Ajit Doval on Thursday sent out a stern message to the law enforcement agency for not being able to contain the riots.

The police was found wanting as the three-day mayhem, which started on 23 February in Delhi, claimed 53 lives and injured over 300 people.

“Law making is the most sacrosanct job in democracy. And you are the enforcers of that law. If you fail to enforce laws, democracy fails. Law is as good as it is executed on the ground," Doval said at the inauguration of the Young Superintendents of Police Conference in Gurugram.

In fact, following the flare-up, Doval had to step in for damage control and, subsequently, the Union home ministry appointed senior Indian Police Service (IPS) officer S.N. Shrivastava as the Delhi police commissioner, replacing Amulya Patnaik.

“The police should not only be fair and credible but they should also be seen as fair and credible," Doval said, adding: “People may look at the example of one policeman doing something and that can create a general perception of all policemen being that way."

With the Delhi Police facing flak for not being able to address the growing unrest between anti- and pro-Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) protestors across Shaheen Bagh, Jamia Millia Islamia and Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU), Doval said the force required a facelift to regain its reputation.

“It is felt that the person who enforces the law is the ruler, but in a democracy that is not the case, and trying to do so, will cause resistance among people. Even if one policeman does something good and that message is spread through social media, then people will feel more reassured."

As north-east Delhi limps back to normalcy, Delhi lieutenant governor Anil Baijal on Thursday held a meeting with members of peace committees of the violence-affected district. The home ministry said: “A close watch is being kept on social media platforms, which may disseminate rumors."

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