Delhi pogrom: ‘Should we place toilet cleaners on pedestal?’ Kapil Mishra delivered casteist speech, claims eyewitness

In a police complaint in relation to the Delhi violence, the complainant claimed seeing BJP leader Kapil Mishra and his followers take part in the casteist abuses along with Islamophobic slogans in Kardampuri in northeast Delhi.

A complaint filed by Mohammad Jami Rizvi, a resident of northeast Delhi’s Yamuna Vihar on 24 February claims that on 23 February, Kapil Mishra had extensively used casteist slurs against Dalits in his speech and the crowd standing with him shouted anti-Dalit slogans.

The same complaint was stamped as received by the office of Delhi’s commissioner of police, the MHA, the PMO, and the LG’s office.

The complainant mentioned the slogan in his compliant and it reads as:

Kapil Mishra tum lathh bajao, hum tumhare saath hai ( Kapil Mishra, you beat them with sticks, we all are with you )

Lambe-lambe latth bajao, hum tumhare saath hai ( Beat them with long sticks, we all are with you)

Kheech-kheech ke latth bajao, hum tumhare saath hai ( Beat them with super-strength, we all are with you)

Mullo par tum lath bajao, hum tumhare saath hai ( Beat the Mullas [Muslims], we all are with you)

Chamaaro par tum latth bajao, hum tumhare saath hai ( Beat the Chamaars [Dalits], we all are with you)

According to the complaint, Mishra addressed his supporters and said: “Ye hamare ghar ke toilet saaf karne walon ko kya ham apne sar pe bithayenge“? ( Those who clean the toilets in our homes, should we now place them on a pedestal? )

Mishra’s supporters shouted in response, “Thoroughly not”, Rizvi wrote in compliant.

Kapil Mishra had blamed Muslims protesting CAA for their participation in anti-reservation protests in his speech.

Yeh mulle pehle CAA aur NRC ke liye protest kar rahe the, ab ye Aarakshan ke liye bhi ladenge. Ab to inhe sabak sikhana hi padega. “These Muslims were first protesting CAA and NRC, and now they even started protesting for reservation. Now we should teach them a lesson,” the complaint quotes from Mishra’s speech.

On 23 February, Bhim Army chief Chandrashekhar Azad had called for ‘Bharat Bandh’ against a Supreme Court ruling which denied reservation on promotion and appointments in public employment. Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA), National Register of Citizens (NRC), National Population Register (NPR), and thrashing of Dalits in the recent past had also been included in the shutdown call.

The Anti-CAA protest site in Kardampuri was one of several anti-CAA sit-in protests ongoing at the time. That day, the site witnessed huge participation of Dalits and Muslims. Protesters had raised slogans against denying reservations, CAA, NRC, NPR along with Jai Bhim and Islamophobia Murdabad.

Rizvi, the complainant also wrote in his complaint that following the speech and slogans, in the presence of the police, supporters of Mishra began stopping cars of Muslims and Dalits, and abusing the Muslims anti-nationals, mullahs, and using casteist terminologies against the Dalits. He also said they beat Muslims and Dalits up and destroyed their cars.

According to the complaint, Kapil Mishra told his mob “Don’t leave these fuckers. Today we will teach them such a lesson that they will forget how to protest,” while brandishing his gun in the air.

No FIR had been registered against his complaint.

The anti-Muslim violence in northeast Delhi in February is widely acknowledged to have been sparked by incendiary comments made by Kapil Mishra, about Muslims peacefully protesting against ‘anti-Muslim and unconstitutional’ citizenship law. Video evidence and witness accounts pointed to police allowing Hindu mobs to roam the streets freely to target the Muslim community.