A police Sub-Inspector posted in Uttarakhand’s Mussoorie was transferred days after he issued a challan to Roorkee BJP MLA Pradeep Batra and his family for allegedly not wearing masks properly and for defying the curfew.
On Sunday, the curfew in the hill town kicked in at 1 pm. Hours later, SI Neeraj Kathait ran into MLA Batra and his family, taking a stroll.
Kathait issued MLA a challan, and in anger, he threw the challan amount at him — all captured in a video that was shared widely. On Thursday, Kathait was transferred, TOI reported.
The sub-inspector was on Thursday transferred to Kalsi, around 40 km from Dehradun, Mussoorie Circle Officer Narendra Pant said.
“The sub-inspector’s transfer was ordered by the SSP’s office,” CO Pant told TOI. “The officer had completed three years in Mussoorie and was due for a transfer,” he added.
Earlier on Sunday, CO Pant had said, “The officer was simply following instructions. However, we have launched an inquiry.”
Last Sunday, a video clip surfaced on social media wherein Kathait could be heard asking the MLA, “How are you roaming around without masks and no social distancing? Roaming around is not allowed.”
As the news of the officer’s transfer spread, local people rallied behind him in support, saying he was being penalised for doing his duty.
The Mussoorie Traders Association (MTA) even submitted a memorandum to Chief Minister Tirath Singh Rawat, seeking his intervention and stopping the SI’s transfer.
Opposition Congress said it would launch an agitation if Kathait was not reinstated. “We urge the government to revoke the sub-inspector’s transfer. It was the MLA who was violating the rules,” added Gaurav Agarwalla, president of the party’s Mussoorie unit.