A constable, Sunita Yadav, had an altercation with a Gujarat MLA’s son and his friends for violating the lockdown night curfew, last week. Following the incident, Yadav has been transferred, and she has sent in her resignation. Her transfer has triggered massive online controversy.
Sunita Yadav Stood Her Ground Against Threats From The Rule Breakers
Friends of Gujarat Health Minister Kumar Kanani’s son were caught by Yadav, for driving around in Surat at night. The state has imposed a night curfew during the coronavirus outbreak. Yadav confronted them for breaking the lockdown curfew rules, and pointed out that they were not wearing masks as well. The men called Kanani’s son Prakash, who arrived at the spot and had a heated argument with the constable. A video and audio clip of the altercation has gone viral.
The Minister’s son threatens to ruin Yadav’s career – he can make her stand at the same spot for 365 days through his political power, he claims. The undeterred Sunita Yadav replies that she isn’t their slave or someone they can treat however they wish to.
The heated argument eventually leads to Yadav calling her senior inspector to report the men. The senior inspector, realising that the matter concerns politics, immediately orders her to leave the place.
That Sunday, Prakash Kanani and his friends were arrested, and later released on bail.
Following the incident, Yadav, who was posted at the Varachha Police Station, was transferred to the police headquarters. She has since sent in her resignation.
‘Lady Singham ’ Sunita Yadav Is Being Hailed Online
On the one hand, Yadav and her family have been receiving threats to their life and abuses from people who want to “quieten the issue”, according to Republic World. On the other hand, she has been dubbed ‘Lady Singham’ by the locals of Surat and people online.
She is being praised on social media for her sense of duty and resilience in the face of threat. Several Bollywood personalities like Swara Bhaskar and Tapsee Pannu have tweeted about the incident, hailing Yadav and condemning the authorities for transferring her despite the fact that she was just doing her job and standing up for herself.
Responding to her being hailed a role model for women and police officers alike, Yadav rejects the pedestalisation. She told India Today, “I am no Lady Singham. I am a simple LR officer [Lok Rakshak Dal]. I just did my duty. People say this because not too many [cops] have done this. But it feels nice when people say that.”
She is determined to come back to the force as an IPS officer. Her authority being undermined made her resolve to prepare for and pass the exam. “Earlier I thought power lies in the khaki [the police uniform]. The incident has taught that it lies in the rank. So, I want to prepare for the IPS. I want to come back with rank,” says Yadav.
An inquiry into the incident has been launched by the police commissioner, but the incident also begs a societal inquiry into how women in positions of power are treated when they actually utilise their power.
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