Rajasthan: RTI Activist Nandlal Vyas Released On Bail By Jodhpur Court

Ankit Sharma

February 25th, 2018

Image Courtesy: DNA

Jodhpur RTI activist Nandlal Vyas was arrested on February 18 in a case of the SC/ST Act. A large group of policeman swooped down Nandlal’s house on Saturday morning, mishandled him and carried him away.

The case

Nandlal Vyas had continuously been seeking information from the Agriculture University, Jodhpur and made several attempts to investigate the series of irregularities regarding the misuse of funds and recruitment of staff in the university.

In a similar attempt to seek information, Vyas was allegedly attacked by the staff of the university, and a case under the SC/ST was filed against them by the police.

Khima Nath, a Section Officer of the Agricultural University, filed a case against Vyas and his colleagues under the SC/ST Act in Mandore police station for allegedly insulting him with casteist remarks and obstructing the state of affairs of the university.  

The case was examined by the then ACP (Mandore) Bhopal Singh Lakhavat. The investigation was underway on the allegations of casteist slurs. However, recommendations were made to the DCP for removing the charge of obstructing the state of affairs. However, the file was not forwarded for a long time.

A counter case

Vyas was granted bail on Monday. Along with filing an application in the court for rejection of an FIR under Section 482 of CrPC, Vyas also registered a counter-case against Khima nath for allegedly using forged documents.

In an allegation by another RTI activist, Goverdhan Singh, it was claimed that Khima Nath belonged to OBC category, not SC/ST category and the police had made a false case.

Nandlal’s  Statement

Nandlal Vyas, in a video sent to The Logical Indian, said, “Despite filing several petitions against Khima Nath, the police did not register any case. The important thing to notice is that the case was transferred to the CBI and the Home Minister too had given the facts, but the DCP did not pay any heed to analyse the facts, rather he changed the investigating officer, who arrested me later. The police officers molested my wife and daughters. I was beaten, ill-treated and arrested as if I were some animal.”

Members of Jagriti had given a complaint to the police commissioner against his arrest, terming it to be unlawful and coercive. Vyas accused the police of assault to him and his family and detaining him in a wrong way.

“It is an attempt to shut an activist’s voice”

Vyas’s lawyer, Parmeshwar Pilani, spoke to The Logical Indian about the case. He said, “It is an attempt to shut an activist’s voice, an activist who has been working day and night to expose corruption. Vyas is an honest, designated Assistant Accounts Officer in the finance ministry who always raised his voice against corrupt activities. Despite his status and reputation, not only was he arrested with the heavy police force and RAC, but the police also molested the women in his house.”

“Khima Nath is not registered under SC/ST status, There is already a case on him in the court for forging caste certificates,” he added.  

When asked about any possible political interference in the case, he said, “The VC of the Agricultural University is alleged to a have good connections with the police commissioner and all police officers in the locality. Despite several petitions filed against the staff of the University, the allegations backfired on the accused himself.” The Police has acted in a barbaric manner, assaulting women in his family, looting mobile phones, jewellery, and cash. We shall now move to the court against the police action.”

What do the police say?

When asked  about the arrest, Police Commissioner Ashok Rathore said, “The allegations made are false, and only the court decides whether the facts are correct. Police officers receive information from the victim’s point as well as the accused, they analyse the information and then come to conclusions. On Vyas’s request, not even the investigation process but also another investigating officer was appointed. When he was also declared to be an accused, he naturally became an accused party.”

“When the police reached Vyas’s house, he locked himself in the bathroom and punched an inspector on his eye. The women in the house undressed and tried to get along with the officers when in the meantime, the members of the house filmed videos of the same. A person can easily analyse then, what kind of man he is,” the police commissioner added.

On the basis of revelations made by Nandlal Vyas. The Logical Indian urges the authorities to look into the case and ensure that justice is dealt.

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