Another Youth Arrested in Delhi’s Kanwariya Car Vandalism Case
Video Editor: Vishal Kumar
The Delhi Police on Monday, 13 August, made another arrest in the kanwar yatri vandalism case, which took place in Moti Nagar on 7 August.
The police arrested 22-year-old Yogesh from JJ Colony in connection with the case.
After a group of kanwar yatris were caught on camera vandalising a car in Delhi’s Moti Nagar last week, six persons including the main accused were arrested in connection with the case on Thursday, 9 August. The Kanwariyas had vandalised the car after the driver had allegedly brushed past one of them, leading to an altercation.
The accused 26-year old Rahul alias Billa, is a resident of Delhi’s Uttam Nagar and has a criminal past. Speaking to the Hindustan Times, the police said the accused is a “drug addict” and has earlier been involved in several cases of theft.
“He was out on bail in a theft case registered in 2014. He had spent six-seven months in jail back then,” said the DCP, Vijay Kumar.
On 7 August, the group shattered the windows and windscreens of the car with sticks and rods and finally toppled the car over, while mute spectators watched on.
A paramilitary officer’s daughter was driving the car and allegedly brushed past one of the Kanwar yatris who then got into an argument with the driver and her friend. They reportedly left the car and fled when the number of yatris rose.
Two policemen also arrived at the spot when the yatris were vandalising the car before turning it over. Vijay Kumar, DCP (West), had earlier told The Quint that the family did not wish to pursue the case further.
However, an inquiry conducted by the Assistant Commissioner of Police of Punjabi Bagh revealed that one of the Kanwar yatri was pushed by the car which led to a heated discussion between the people in the car and the Kanwar yatris.
The inquiry further revealed that one of the yatri was slapped by the person inside the car, ensuing an altercation following which the Kanwar yatris started damaging the car.
"Occupants of the car immediately left the spot and refused to give any complaint in writing. However, police is inquiring into the matter based on the available CCTV footage and statements of eyewitnesses," the statement by Delhi Police read.
The investigative officer located the damaged vehicle but neither the Kanwar yatris nor the occupants of the car were present at the scene, Kumar said.
Niti Aayog Vice Chairman Rajiv Kumar on Thursday, 9 August, came down heavily on kanwariyas for their unruly behaviour and wondered whether hooliganism should be allowed in the name of religion.
Meanwhile, several commuters who witnessed the rampage from close quarters expressed their fear and rued the lack of policing in the national capital.
"I was scared after seeing the Kanwariyas vandalising the car. I had to attend an important meeting but decided to postpone it," said Sonia Jha, a commuter told PTI.
Mithilesh Singh, who saw the entire drama unfold from a few feet away had to cancel his visit to the hospital to see his ailing uncle.
"It was a terrifying experience... I had to cancel my plan and return home," he said.
(With Inputs From Hindustan Times, ANI and PTI)