GG News Bureau
Bareilly, 16th Sept. The sub-divisional magistrate of Meerganj tehsil in Bareilly was removed from his position after a video surfaced in which he is allegedly seen ordering a guy to squat in his office as punishment.
The man went to the SDM’s office to protest about the alleged encroachment of a cremation ground, but the officer allegedly told him to “murga bano (squatting and holding both ears)” as punishment. On Friday, a video of the event went viral.
Saumya Agarwal, Divisional Commissioner of Bareilly, announced on Saturday that an investigation into the incident has been launched.
Bareilly District Magistrate Shivakant Dwivedi stated that there appears to be laxity on the side of SDM Udit Pawar, who has been assigned to the district headquarters. Desh Deepak Singh has taken over as SDM of Bareilly in place of Pawar.
Pawar has denied all allegations saying the complainant squatted “on his own”.
“I did not ask any complainant to squat. The youth who came to my office squatted on his own as he entered my room. His friends took photographs and made videos, and then made those videos viral.” “I assured them that the matter will be probed by the tehsildar, and action will be taken if any encroachment of cremation ground is found,” Pawar added.
The complainant has alleged that when he and some villagers asked the SDM to act on the alleged encroachment in Mandanpur village, Pawar got angry and insulted them and then asked one of them to squat as punishment.
Villagers of Mandanpur village said that the cremation ground has been encroached by some Muslims.
The only other alternative to the cremation ground is to perform last rites on the banks of Ramganga river, they said. But since the river is currently in spate, the last rites cannot be performed there too, they added.
On Friday, villagers, including Ramkumar, Puranlal, Dharampal, Gedan Lal and Pappu Lodhi, gave a memorandum to SDM Pawar on the matter, to which they were told that action will be taken on the basis of a report by tehsildar.
Lodhi said that when they complained about the delay in taking any action on the matter, the SDM got angry, asked the villagers to leave the room and told one of them to squat.