Forty Years Ago: January 22, 1981

Karnataka Violence

At least five people were killed in the police firings at the HAL in Bangalore and in Chintamani, Kolar district, Karnataka. Three students were killed when the police opened firing in Chintamani, about 70 km from Bangalore. In Bangalore, two people were killed when the police opened fire to quell a riotous mob during the bandh called by the striking employees of the public sector units. The police opened fire after their attempt to disperse the stone-throwing mob through lathicharging and teargassing failed. In fact, the mob snatched a constable’s rifle and set fire to a police officer’s motorcycle and a few cycles. The forum of public sector employees demanded a judicial inquiry into the police firing and called on workers to observe January 25 as a black day.

Madras CJ Resigns

The Chief Justice of the Madras High Court, M M Ismail, is resigning in protest against his transfer to Kerala “without” his “consent”. Sources close to him said that a straightforward and honest judge opposed to any form of authoritarianism had no other alternative but to tender his resignation. They said that Ismail was not opposed to the transfer per se but the manner in which it was imposed on him. He sat on court on January 21 and is likely to sit on January 22 as well.

Who Trains Cops?

The police training institutions in Punjab and Haryana, responsible for training “the guardians of the law” and “friends of the public” seem inadequately equipped to discharge their functions. They are staffed by “condemned” and “shelved” police personnel, an investigation by this newspaper has revealed. These institutions also have inadequate facilities and are run according to a dated curriculum framed in British times.

Hooch Tragedy

Five persons died after drinking illicit liquor in Jaipur district of Rajasthan. Two others were admitted to hospital.

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