A policeman in Uttar Pradesh's Noida was seen on camera hitting women who had been standing in a queue for hours to take home ration amid the coronavirus pandemic.
In the mobile video, a man in white shirt is also seen pointing towards some women at different areas of the queue to single them out for thrashing with a lathi.
Sources said the women had been waiting in line since 5 am on Friday to take ration. But even at 4 pm or 11 hours later they were yet to get their turn. They blamed the long wait on the ration distributor for choosing to distribute food to only "his people" first.
The policeman is seen in the video walking towards the women and swinging his lathi on one of them. Then he drags a woman out of the queue and makes her leave.
The man in the white shirt who is reportedly connected with the ration distributor again points to some more women in the back of the queue, after which the policeman goes there and thrashes them.
The Noida Police tweeted that the sub-inspector seen in the video, Saurabh Sharma, has been suspended after an investigation.
प्रारंभिक जांच पर घटना की सत्यता स्थापित की गई है। उपनिरीक्षक सौरभ शर्मा को तुरंत निलंबित कर, विभागीय कार्यवाही शुरू की गई है।— POLICE COMMISSIONERATE NOIDA (@noidapolice) May 16, 2020
The state government has stepped up efforts to give ration to the poor amid the coronavirus lockdown. Thousands of daily wage workers are out of work as a majority of businesses are shut. Pressure is piling up on them to provide for themselves and their families.