Bansal defends midnight crackdown on Ramdev's protest

Posted By: Pti
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Union minister Pawan Kumar Bansal
New Delhi, Jun 12: Charging Ramdev with going back on his words to end his indefinite fast, Union minister Pawan Kumar Bansal has defended the midnight police action against the yoga guru saying it helped in preventing casualties.

The Parliamentary Affairs Minister, who was one of the interlocutors who held parleys with Ramdev, also scoffed at suggestions that the government was arrogant in dealing with the situation.

"He (Ramdev) said he would withdraw it (the agitation) in the afternoon of the first day (June 4). And he did not...after a sort of agreement between the government and Ramdev, when we found that the things were getting out of hands, he was sticking to what he had said, the government had to take that action," Bansal told Karan Thapar in his Devil's Advocate programme.

The minister also sought to defend the decision to crackdown at Ramlila grounds at the middle of the night.

"If police were to reach that place in the morning when Ramdev was exhorting something to people, the reaction of the people would have been very violent...led to at least a 100 deaths," he said.

Asked why the people at Ramlila grounds were not given a reasonable deadline to leave the venue, Bansal said midnight was the "only time" when the government could have taken action. 


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