New Delhi: The Supreme Court Thursday slammed Delhi Police for acting in an arbitrary manner and using excessive force in disbursing Baba Ramdev and his followers from the Ramlila ground here last year. It also pulled up the yoga guru for not cooperating with police.
The court said what happened at the sprawling ground on the night of June 4-5, leading to the death of a woman, was a demonstration of the might of the state.
Judges B.S. Chauhan and Swatanter Kumar pulled up Baba Ramdev for not cooperating with police and asking his followers to disburse only after police imposed prohibitory orders banning the assembly of people.
The court has awarded an ad hoc compensation of Rs.5 lakh to the next of kin of Haryana resident Rajbala who suffered spinal injuries and died.
The court has also awarded compensation of Rs.50,000 to all those who suffered grievous injuries and Rs.25,000 to others injured that night.
The court directed Baba Ramdev's trust to bear 25 percent cost of the compensation.
In a concurring judgment, Justice Chauhan said the police action amounted to violation of fundamental and human rights.
He said the essence of Section 144 is to prevent breach of peace and not to breach the peace. He said the people at Ramlila ground were sleeping and they were not a violent crowd.