The Telegraph
Tuesday , July 26 , 2011
Since 1st March, 1999
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Ramdev eviction caveat

New Delhi, July 25: The Supreme Court today warned the government against any repeat of the Ramdev eviction episode, in which Delhi police allegedly used force on thousands sleeping at the Ramlila ground on June 4 night.

The court, however, rejected a plea by Baba Ramdev’s trust to issue a notice to P. Chidambaram after the police said the Union home minister did not order the eviction.

“This (such eviction) should not happen again. Innocent citizens cannot be disturbed when they are sleeping,” the bench said.

The police, however, said there was no lathicharge — only the firing of eight tear-gas shells in the air — and denied the crowd was asleep. It said no force was used — else the eviction would have taken minutes and not two hours —and that all the injuries were caused by a minor stampede.

The court will view footage of the action together with the police and trust counsels at 4.15pm on August 5, and hold hearings on August 8 and 16.

“We want to finish hearing the case as soon as possible,” the court said.

The live TV images of the police action had prompted the apex court to issue notices on its own to the Delhi police chief and then home secretary G.K. Pillai on June 20, seeking an explanation.

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