A 38-year-old man has died in western Uttar Pradesh's Bijnor town during a vehicle checking drive by the local police. The man's family alleges the police assaulted him during the checking and that led to his death.
Locals stormed a police station in the town and broke furniture there before being pushed out of the campus by the cops. Some relatives of the man also sustained injuries.
The Bijnor police deny the assault and says the man collapsed either due to heat or a heart attack. A post mortem has been ordered.
The local police chief told NDTV the man, who is a farmer, and his son were riding a bike without helmets when they were stopped by the police for checking. The man also failed to produce papers for the bike and so the police asked his son to fetch both helmets and papers from their home nearby.
The cops claim the man collapsed while the son was away to fetch these things. The man's son alleges his father was assaulted during the interim period.
"The man collapsed while his son had gone to fetch documents. We are waiting for the post-mortem report and action will be taken if assault is proven," said Bijnor Superintendent of Police Sanjeev Tyagi.
Two days ago, a video shot in Uttar Pradesh's Badaun district showed police personnel pointing their guns at commuters and forcing them to hold up their hands while checking their vehicles.
The video showed one of the police officials, surrounded by constables pointing their weapons at commuters, shouting warnings.
"Raise your hands. Spread your legs. If you lower your hands, you'll be shot. Then don't say you were shot. Who will put on your helmet? You will be shot," the police official is heard saying in the video, accessed by news agency ANI.
The area's residents claim the manner of checking by the police has become routine, reported IANS.
According to one of the commuters, the police don't make concessions for women either.
"If you are driving and the cops want to stop you, they will do that with a gun in hand. The method is so intimidating and humiliating for the common man. The cops make no concession even if the driver is a woman," Raj Kumar Agarwal, a businessman was quoted as saying by IANS.
Police officials said the measure of pointing their guns at commuters was taken to keep a check on crime in the area.
"Badaun is a crime prone area and we keep our guns out because you never know which vehicle is bringing criminals. We have to remain prepared," a police official was quoted as saying by IANS, on the condition of anonymity.
Badaun's Senior Superintendent of Police (SSP) Ashok Kumar Tripathi said the measure was a "tactical technique".
"There have been incidents earlier where people of criminal mentality fired at the police during vehicle checking. We have suffered casualties due to such incidents, that is why a tactical technique is being used," he was quoted as saying by ANI.
The office of the Director General Of Police or DGP said a probe into the incident would be initiated and action would be taken, if needed.
With inputs from ANI and IANS