Punjab Congress chief Navjot Singh Sidhu has courted controversy over his "make a cop wet his pants" remark with two police officials strongly condemning and dubbing it as "shameful". Even Congress MP from Ludhiana Ravneet Singh Bittu backed the policemen and praised them for their role during militancy and COVID-19 times.
The controversy erupted after Sidhu at a recent rally in Sultanpur Lodhi while pointing towards sitting MLA Navtej Singh Cheema said he can make a "thanedar(cop) wet his pants". He repeated this remark during a rally at Batala on Sunday when local leader Ashwani Sekhri was standing by his side. When reporters asked about his remark, Sidhu said, "Listen to me… it is a fictional thing that this man wields authority… "
A video clip of Sidhu making the remark went viral on social media inviting sharp reaction from some police officials. Chandigarh Deputy Superintendent of Police Dilsher Singh Chandel dubbed Sidhu's remark as "shameful". "It is very shameful that such a senior leader uses these words for his own force and humiliates them," said Chandel. "This is the same force which protects him (Sidhu) and his family," he said in a video message. He even dared Sidhu to return his force deployed for his protection. "Without (security) force, even a rickshaw puller will not listen to him," he said.
"I strongly condemn this remark and he (Sidhu) should not use such words for his force. The force has its own dignity and respect and it is our responsibility to maintain this dignity," he said. Punjab police sub-inspector Balbir Singh, posted at Jalandhar Rural, too strongly condemned Sidhu's remark. "Such language was used by a senior leader against us, I strongly condemn it," he said in a video message. He also requested the Punjab DGP not to allow the image of police to be affected. "We live with our families in the society and our children question us why such language is being used against us," Balbir Singh said.
He said this remark was not against any 'thanedar' but against the whole police force. "I want to say to Sidhu Sahib that we are not cowards. We are brave and the whole country knows about the tales of our bravery," he said as he recalled the police role against militancy. He further said without caring for their own lives, the personnel of the Punjab police provided food to the needy at their homes during the COVID-19 outbreak. Commenting on the videos of the Chandigarh DSP and the Punjab police sub-inspector, Ludhiana MP Bittu praised the Punjab police for their role in eliminating terrorism from the state.
Bittu, whose grandfather and the then chief minister Beant Singh died in a bomb blast in 1995, said, "Some videos of DSP and sub-inspector have gone viral. First of all whatever has been said about the police, I seek apology," he said. "I know it is Punjab police personnel, from senior IPS officer to the constable level, which did not care for their own lives and curbed terrorism with iron hand," Bittu wrote on his Facebook page.
Bittu said during the COVID-19 outbreak, the police force personnel took food to the homes of people. Referring to the Ludhiana court bomb blast, he said it was the Punjab police which reached the spot first. "How will they protect people if we use wrong words against them? It was very important that we stand by them," he said. "We are proud of you and we salute you," he said.
-With PTI Inputs