By Arré Bench Aug. 20, 2020
Bihar DGP Gupteshwar Pandey’s statement yesterday that “Bihar ke mukhyamantri pe comment karne ki aukaat Rhea Chakraborty ki nahi hai,” was gravely out of place and not befitting his position. As a public servant, it is not the DGP’s place to question any citizen’s right to comment on the government.
Sushant Singh Rajput’s suicide on June 14 has caused many people lots of pain. But ever since the unverified claims that his death was actually due to murder and not a suicide, there has been a vicious troll campaign against the imagined perpetrators. Of this group, Rajput’s ex Rhea Chakraborty has come in for some of the worst attacks, from anonymous trolls as well as more public figures who are up in arms against her. The latest public figure to make an offensive remark against Chakraborty was Bihar’s Director General of Police (DGP), Gupteshwar Pandey.
#WATCH “Bihar ke mukhyamantri pe comment karne ki aukaat Rhea Chakraborty ki nahi hai,” says Bihar DGP when asked about the actor’s comments on CM Nitish Kumar. #SushantSinghRajput pic.twitter.com/qDPKkHINhE
— ANI (@ANI) August 19, 2020
DGP Pandey’s statement to reporters yesterday that “Bihar ke mukhyamantri pe comment karne ki aukaat Rhea Chakraborty ki nahi hai,” was gravely out of place and not befitting his position. As a public servant, it is not the DGP’s place to question any citizen’s right to comment on the government.
His statement was in response to Chakraborty filing an affidavit with the Supreme Court saying that the FIR connecting her to Rajput’s death was filed only because Bihar’s Chief Minister Nitish Kumar involved himself in the matter. The DGP’s poor choice of words, once the video hit the internet, ended up getting called out for its offensiveness.
Bihar DGP Gupteshwar Pandey :
“Rhea Chakravarty ki Nitish Kumar par tippani karne ki aukaat nahi hai”
Cannot remember the last time I heard a serving IPS Officer use such unprofessional language. Hope this unprofessionalism doesn’t spill over to investigations.
— Shreya Dhoundial (@shreyadhoundial) August 19, 2020
The backlash came from many quarters, and eventually, DGP Pandey had to issue a clarification. He claimed he did not mean to be offensive, but rather meant that Chakraborty, as a named accused in the case, did not have the “stature” to comment on the Bihar CM. Of course, the damage had already been done by that point, both for the DGP as well as Chakraborty, who had to endure a fresh wave of troll tweets about her “aukaat” on Twitter.
— Marya Shakil (@maryashakil) August 19, 2020
The original comment and the half-apology that followed are just another reminder of how some officials in power seem to enjoy wielding a sense of entitlement over the citizens they are meant to serve.