Delhi Police Remove Graffiti At Jamia, Shaheen Bagh; Netizens Question Govts Priorities Amid COVID-19 Outbreak

Image Credit: Hindustan Times

Delhi Police Remove Graffiti At Jamia, Shaheen Bagh; Netizens Question Govt's Priorities Amid COVID-19 Outbreak

This article is more than 1 year old.

Students claimed that the police came with buckets of white paint to deface all the slogan graffiti on the walls of the university.

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After the Delhi Police cleared the protest site at Shaheen Bagh and Jamia Millia Islamia, the cops on March 24 also removed and concealed the art installations and graffiti with paint at both locations.

Students claimed that the police came with buckets of white paint to deface all the slogan graffiti on the walls of the university.

Jamia had voluntarily concluded its three-month long demonstration on March 21, abiding by the guidelines enforced by Delhi CM Arvind Kejriwal to contain the spread of coronavirus.

Protests at Shaheen Bagh were dispersed amid the COVID-19 outbreak and a few agitators were also detained by police.This came after the Delhi government announced a lockdown in the national capital and imposed Section 144 to curb further spread of the virus.

The women protesters in Shaheen Bagh continued their protest against the Citizenship (Amendment) Act for 100 days before it was cleared.

In a video tweeted by Shaheen Bagh's official Twitter handle, a woman protester lashed out at the Delhi Police for clearing the protest site despite them following all necessary measures against the outbreak of the virus.

"If they cleared protest site only because of coronavirus threat, why did they remove all the other structures and art installations?" the woman asks in the video.

A few of the graffiti artists at Jamia claim this as their victory. "Our graffiti has reached where it was supposed to, that is why they were removed today," Simeen, one of the students at Jamia said.

"We removed all the material that was obstructing the pathway. Now that the protests have been cleared, we did away with the materials too," DCP southeast R.P. Meena said in an interview with ThePrint.

The DCP however, denied painting over the graffiti at the two locations, putting the blame on the civic authorities.The local administration and authorities might be behind the painting of the walls, to bring them to their original condition," Meena said.

While images of the Delhi police wiping off the art went viral, several netizens took to Twitter to question the police and the government's "priorities" amid the outbreak of a global pandemic.




The police also used drones to monitor the situation after the protest sites were cleared.

Protests at Delhi's Hauz Rani and Turkman Gate were also called off on Monday, March 23, but the police still cleared the sites, dismantling all structures.

The Logical Indian Take

As the nation battles the deadly pandemic which has infected a total of 724 people and claimed lives of 17, the government and its priorities still remain unclear. Delhi Police removing graffiti and artwork at a time when the country is in complete lockdown explains how the police and the government see it as an opportunity to curb those voices which have been agitating for months now.

This act by the police raises several questions on what the government aims at combating first, a global health crisis or citizens' dissent against their functioning.

Also Read: Amid Nationwide Lockdown, Centre Comes To Rescue Of Stranded Migrant Workers

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Editor : Sumanti Sen

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