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Jethmalani holds Chidambaram responsible for Ramlila Maidan crackdown

New Delhi, Thu, 23 Feb 2012 ANI

New Delhi, Feb 23 (ANI): Holding Union Home Minister P. Chidambaram responsible for the midnight crackdown at the Ramlila Maidan last year, veteran lawyer Ram Jethmalanai on Thursday welcomed the verdict of the Supreme Court and said that yoga guru Baba Ramdev has clearly emerged as the winner in this case.

 

"The Supreme Court has found that the police has acted hastily. There was no emergency of any kind as they pretend and that they should not have resorted to the actions they have taken. To my mind, Swami Ramdev has won the case," he told the media here.

 

Jethmalani further said Chidambaram is an enemy of the Indian constitution.

 

"I want to know, in the name of the law and the constitution, who has given power to this 'stupid' Home Minister of India that he can deport anybody from New Delhi merely because he does not want him to lecture to the people? He is the one who is an enemy of the constitution, and the right of free speech of everybody," said Jethmalani.

 

"There is no denying the fact that Swami Ramdev's public declaration was that he is fighting against corruption in this country," he added.

 

Jethmalani, who appeared for Ramdev in the Supreme Court in the case, blamed political leaders in the government for the actions of the police.

 

"So far as the finding of the court has been concerned, it has completely held that the crowd was a peaceful crowd, it is the police, which is guilty of aggression. This should make somebody resign," said Jthmalani.

 

"The political bosses of the country are responsible for the action of these people, particularly because Mr. Chidambaram said in his press conference that I had decided that Swamiji will not be allowed to fast. This country is being ruled by him. He is the ruler of this country," he added.

 

Jethmalani further extended complete solidarity with Ramdev in his crusade against black money and corruption.

 

"He is a yoga teacher alright, but the whole nation is sick, this government is more sick, they need this yoga treatment from this great yogi. I have not the slightest doubt that he is my comrade in arms, he will stand by me and I will stand by him. Our fight against corruption will continue, no matter what Chidambaram might have to say," he said.

 

Meanwhile, an irate Ramdev also hit out at the government and said it had violated human rights and constitutional values by initiating the crackdown.

 

"The government possesses a lot of power. The government misused that power. It violated constitutional values and provisions. It violated human rights. The government perpetrated cruelty and violence. Section 144 is imposed to ensure peace, but in this case, it was imposed to break the peace. What can be more shocking that this?" he said.

 

The Supreme Court had earlier in the day castigated the Delhi Police and Baba Ramdev for the midnight violent incident at the Ramlila Maidan last year, and said it was a "glaring example of trust deficit" between the people and the government.

 

An apex court bench of Justices B S Chauhan and Swatanter Kumar said that incident showed the might of the state, which struck at the foundation of democracy.

 

The bench further observed that the police and the state could have avoided that tragic incident in which one person died and several others were injured.

 

Commenting on the death of a woman Rajbala during the incident, the apex court directed the state government and Baba Ramdev to pay a compensation of Rs.5 lakh to her next of kin.

 

The court directed Baba Ramdev to pay 25 percent of the compensation, while the rest 75 percent would have to be paid by the Government of Delhi.

 

The yoga guru had been on a hunger strike against corruption along with 65,000 followers when the Delhi Police on the Central Government's orders cracked down on their camp late on the night of June 5 at the Ramlila Maidan.

 

Delhi Police fired tear gas shells, when Ramdev was on his indefinite "fast-unto-death" stir to demand several radical reforms in the prevailing political system, including a death penalty for corrupt officials. (ANI)

 


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