3 held for cop attack at Salt Lake stadium
A policewoman was allegedly grabbed from behind after a clash broke out in the stand of Salt Lake stadium during a World Cup qualifier match on Tuesday night.
At least three men were arrested for attacking the policewoman and exchanging blows with cops who tried to stop them from breaking chairs of the gallery, police said.
The incident took place during India’s World Cup qualifier with Bangladesh.
An officer of the Bidhannagar commissionerate said that trouble broke out in the stands adjacent to ramp No. 9 of the stadium when several spectators started hurling abuses and tried to smash chairs after Bangladesh’s Saad Uddin scored a goal in the 43rd minute of the game. India drew level through Adil Khan in the 88th-minute of the match.
Those arrested have been charged under various sections of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) including 354B (assault or use of criminal force to woman with intent to disrobe), 353 (assault or criminal force to deter public servant from discharge of duty) and 323 (punishment for voluntarily causing hurt) among others.
The woman constable was part of a police team that had rushed in to stop them from breaking the chairs, a senior officer of the commissionerate said.
Mrinal Kanti Mondal, a 25-year-old resident of Howrah who works part time as a food delivery boy, allegedly grabbed the constable from behind and tried to unbutton her uniform when she tried to stop him from hurling abuses at the players and trying to break the chairs, the officer added.
As some policemen rushed to her rescue, Belghoria resident Suman Chatterjee, 27, Uttam Kumar Ojha, 27, an electrician who hails from East Midnapore, and other spectators broke into a fist fight with the cops.
“It was then that they called in for reinforcements and more policemen reached the gallery,” said the officer. The cops managed to pin down the three men and they were escorted out of the gallery.
There were stewards (policemen in plainclothes who face the crowd during the match) and police personnel posted in all the galleries and when some of them tried to intervene the fans started to verbally abuse them as well. When other policemen went to the spot, the men started pushing and shoving them even as the match continued.
“These men started to create trouble and tried to break the chairs to hurl them on to the ground,” said a senior cop.
Nearly 300-odd personnel of the Bidhannagar commissionerate, including civic volunteers, had been deployed in multiple layers inside the stadium. Each layer had a separate role to play.
Officers who were part of the security arrangements had received special training in the run-up to the FIFA Under-17 World Cup.
Apart from the cops, 260-plus high-resolution all-weather CCTV cameras at the Salt Lake stadium had kept watch on the spectators.