Friday, March 24, 2017

Dalit RTI activist receives offensive letter, files plaint

Ahmedabad Mirror‎‎‎‎‎‎: Ahmedabad: Friday, March 24, 2017.
A Dalit RTI activist became a victim of hate mail after he allegedly received a postal letter portraying Dr Babasaheb Ambedkar in a derogatory manner. Ashwin Chauhan, a 50-year-old resident of Bapunagar, received the letter in a khakhi envelope with a picture of Ambedkar and a stamp of Bapunagar police station affixed on the back. On opening the envelope, which had three Rs 5 stamps along with the seal of Bapunagar police station stamped on it, Chauhan was shocked to see an image of Ambedkar printed on the letter in a derogatory manner.
A stamp of Bapunagar police station along with Chauhan’s full name and caste was also printed on the letter. Chauhan said, “I visit the police station regularly on RTI business. I have also raised queries about senior police personal through RTI a couple of times. Someone seems to be taking undue advantage of an internal dispute within the police department by sending this letter to my address. They know that I will take up the matter legally.” Initially, the cops refused to accept my FIR. It was registered after I met DCP (Zone-V) Girish Pandya.”
He added, “There is no visible difference in the police station’s seal stamped on the FIR that I lodged and the envelope that I produced.” Chauhan received the letter on March 1. He lodged a complaint with Bapunagar police station on March 2 and an offence was registered against unknown persons under section 153A, 467 and 468 of IPC.
Second Inspector (Bapunagar) R M Gamit who is investigating the case said, “It seems the police seal on the letter was forged. It is highly unlikely that someone from our police station would have done this. The investigation is on.” DCP Pandya said, “Chauhan brought the letter and envelope separately, which raises the question whether the letter came in the same envelope. We are collating a list of suspects so that we can get a handwriting analysis done to identify the perpetrator.” Chauhan said, “I am willing to give a sample of my handwriting to assist investigation.”