This is not the first time that N.C. Asthana has supported or cheered police brutality. In June 2022, he made similar remarks while sharing a video of Uttar Pradesh police personnel thrashing Muslim youths with batons in custody, calling it a “very beautiful scene”
NEW DELHI — Retired IPS Officer N.C. Aasthana has earned a lot of brickbats for his comments calling for shooting the protesting wrestlers.
The wrestlers and their supporters were forcefully evicted by Delhi Police personnel from their protest site at the iconic Jantar Mantar here on Sunday.
In a tweet, Aasthana, a former Kerala Director General of Police (DGP), said that if the need arises, the protesting wrestlers will also be shot down as the police have the legal right to do so.
“If there is a need, they will also be shot. But it will not be done on your demand. As of now, the police threw you out like a pack of garbage. The police have the right to shoot under Section 129. The wish to be shot will be fulfilled at an appropriate time. You need to be educated to be aware of this. We will meet you at the postmortem table,” tweeted Asthana.
Asthana made the controversial remarks while reacting to a statement from protesting wrestler Bajrang Punia, who dared the police to “shoot us all while protesting.”
Asthana’s tendentious remarks drew strong criticism on social media. Several users expressed their dismay at the obnoxious language used by a former officer.
Indian badminton champion Gutta Jwala called Asthana’s remarks “absolutely horrendous”.
“Shameful tweet to make!! Absolutely horrendous. Scary to have bureaucrats talk this language!! Absolutely not acceptable!!!!,” said Jwala.
Journalist Sanjay Sharma said that Asthana’s tweet should put the entire IPS fraternity to shame. He called Asthana mentally sick.
Aishe Gosh, President of Jawaharlal Nehru University Students’ Union, said “Such people are only capable of spreading hate and disgrace in our society… nothing short than that”.
Congress leader Dr. Ajoy Kumar said: “What a shame former DGP (Kerala)! You have brought disrepute to the IPS fraternity”.
This is not the first time that Asthana has supported or cheered police brutality. In June 2022, he made similar remarks while sharing a video of Uttar Pradesh police personnel thrashing Muslim youths with batons in custody, calling it a “very beautiful scene”.
Interestingly, in a December 2021 piece he wrote for The Wire under the headline, ‘Why Police Brutality and Torture Are Endemic in India’, Asthana said: “There is nothing intrinsic to the job of policing that makes them brutal or high-handed”.