The Telegraph
Since 1st March, 1999
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Telegraph salutes this sergeant

Calcutta, Oct. 31: Here’s a request to chief minister Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee: please do not allow Rajat Krishan to be victimised.

Punishment of the sergeant, who stopped Bengal minister Asok Bhattacharya’s car because it did not have the mandatory green sticker and made him walk some distance to the Eden Gardens yesterday, may already have started. Krishan (in picture) was sent back to the Shyambazar traffic guard, where he belongs, a day after the incident.

The minister had to walk about 50 yards and once in the VIP enclosure, complained about having been stopped. An apology from a senior police officer to the minister followed.

That was not the end, though. Today, a curt order from the Calcutta police headquarters said: “He (Krishan) may be relieved from duty at Eden Gardens and be asked to report back to his traffic guard.”

Police commissioner Sujoy Chakraborty defended the order. Krishan should have used his “discretionary powers”, he said.

It was not clear why discretion should be exercised in enforcing rules: one set for ministers and another for others.

“True, the minister’s car did not have a green sticker, but Krishan should not have been dogged,” Chakraborty said. It was a strange comment from the police boss who should insist on rules being “doggedly” implemented. Besides, there is such a thing as backing your boys.

For once, the VIP was not acting as a VIP is expected to. Krishan should be “rewarded for setting an example of how a duty-conscious policeman should act,” Bhattacharya said.

“Initially, I was a little disappointed because as a police officer he should have been able to identify people quickly and exercise his judgement,” the minister added. “But, on hindsight, I realised he was doing his duty and I feel he should be rewarded.”

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