As the fallout of clashes at Tis Hazari court complex between Delhi Police and lawyers on Saturday (Nov 2), the national capital is witnessing one of the massive protests in times. Amid Delhi Police's unprecedented protest at its headquarter in ITO, the slogans of "Humara CP (Commissioner of Police) kaisa ho, Kiran Bedi jaisa ho" were raised, recalling the 31-year-old incident, when a similar event happened in Delhi. When Commissioner of Police Amulya Patnaik addressed the agitating cops and appealed them to keep calm, he was booed by personnel with the slogans and placards of Kiran Bedi's pictures with the caption "We need you".
Why protesting Delhi Police people are raising we need you, Kiran Bedi slogans?
31 years ago, the then Deputy Commissioner of Police, who is also the first lady IPS officer in India, had faced a similar incident during her service in Delhi. Kiran Bedi is still considered to be one of the most efficient commissioner in the history of Delhi Police, who stood by the police department in difficult times and brought major reforms in the system. Now she is the lieutenant governor of Puducherry.
The incident of a scuffle between police and lawyers is not new in Delhi. In 1988, Kiran Bedi was serving as the Deputy Commissioner of North Delhi. The dispute started with a case of theft at St. Stephen's College, the University of Delhi where a cop handcuffed a lawyer as a suspect, at the college campus. This led to a massive protest by lawyers in Delhi against Kiran Bedi. Lawyers argued that handcuffing any accused without judicial consent and the subsequent High Court directions to police, is illegal.
Several clashes broke out between Delhi police personnel and lawyers during the protest. In one such incident on 21 January 1988, 18 lawyers were injured. The case took a severe turn with this and lawyers of various courts of Delhi started opposing Kiran Bedi. The lawyers then, alleged a crowd of over 3,000 people broke into the Tis Hazari court complex and vandalised several things in chambers of the lawyers. They alleged that the crowd did this at the behest of Kiran Bedi.
After this incident lawyers started demanding Kiran Bedi's suspension. A month later on 20 February 1988, another clash broke out between police personnel and lawyers near Kiran Bedi's office. A Judicial Committee was set up to investigate the entire case. Kiran Bedi appeared before the committee and stated that the lawyers had pushed a female cop and abused her. She stood firm in the support of Delhi Police department.
In 1982, sub-inspector in Delhi Police Nirmal Singh towed an Ambassador car belonging to the then Prime Minister Indira Gandhi's office, parking on the wrong side in Connaught Place. Kiran Bedi as the head supported Nirmal Singh.
In 1985, then-Police Commissioner Ved Marwah made a special request for Bedi to be assigned to the police headquarters. There, Bedi cleared several pending files and sanctioned 1,600 promotions in a single day to motivate the staff.
Clearly, in their slogans of "We need you," Delhi Police personnel are seeking a leader who would put their demands as strongly as Bedi.