By Tenzin Dharpo
Bruises on the legs of the Tibetan youth who was thrashed by a policeman in Delhi's Mahipalpur.
DHARAMSHALA, Oct. 25: Days after the incident of two Tibetan youths who were assaulted by an on-duty policeman in Delhi’s Mahipalpur area for calling a nearby police station for assistance to care for an injured pig attracted national attention, one of the Tibetan youths has said that the incident is not only of assault but also of racism.
Tenzin Lhakpa, 20, who is recovering from bruises and ankle injury after being thrashed by a policeman said that the police officer identified to be Vikram Singh used vulgar language at the two Tibetan youths and threatened to kill them if they were seen again in the area. “We were simply trying to help the injured animal. The policeman called us “cheni” (Chinese) and used derogatory reference to my hometown in Uttarakhand being backward,” Lhakpa told Phayul.
In the voice clip that was recorded secretly by the victim, police officer Vikram Singh was heard saying, “You people from the hills come to Delhi and ask for freedom, Should I shoot you?”. The same officer assaulted the two Tibetan youths and told the room-mate of the victim, a youth who is ethnically an Indian, asking him to leave the spot immediately.
The police officer Vikram Singh is now sent to ‘district lines’, a professional jargon used by the police for personnel who are kept away from active duty or part of an investigation pending an inquiry on him for corruption or any other dereliction of duty. Lhakpa revealed that he has been getting calls from the accused officer’s people urging him to drop the case and settle the matter privately.
“The policeman knows that what he did was wrong. That is why I have been getting calls to drop the matter but this incident is much bigger than me or my injuries. There are many cases of racial discrimination by some crooked people of the law enforcements and if I don’t seek justice and see it through then more incidents of this nature will happen again,” Lhakpa who is an intern at Mahipalpur’s Radisson Blu hotel said.
The incident happened in the wee hours of Tuesday, when two Tibetan youths who found an injured pig called an animal rescue center who instructed them to call the 100 number which is India's 911. Both Tenzin Lhakpa, 20, who is pursuing hotel management at IMS University Delhi and Tenzin Kunsel, a nursing student at Delhi’s Jamia Hamdard University sustained bruises and swellings from being beaten with a stick.
Mahipalpur police station where the accused officer was stationed has refused to register a First Information Report (FIR) on Friday, saying that the necessary formalities can only be conducted once the medical reports of the victims are studied, according to the victim’s mother. Both the parents of the victim work for a Dehradun based NGO called Tibetan Animal Lovers, that rescues and helps animals.