India policewoman 'punished' for standing up to politicians

Image from Shreshtha Thakur's Facebook page Image copyright Shreshtha Thakur

A policewoman who stood up to a group of ruling party politicians in India's northern Uttar Pradesh state has been transferred to a different post.

A video went viral of officer Shrestha Thakur arguing with Bharatiya Janata Party politicians after she tried to fine them for a traffic violation.

Ms Thakur said on Facebook that she was told her transfer was routine, but noted that she was not due for a transfer for at least a year.

The decision has caused anger in India.

The video of the altercation showed the officer angrily telling the agitated group of politicians to get written orders from the chief minister that police had no power to check vehicles or issue tickets for traffic violations.

She had also said that police deserved more respect from politicians.

Ms Thakur said in her Facebook post that she had been transferred to Bahraich, which was near the Nepal border.

She told BBC Hindi she was not sure if the posting was a punishment for doing her job or a reward for her good work, but had decided to treat the news positively.

Indian media reports said that the decision to add Ms Thakur's name to a list of 88 other officers who were being transferred was taken after a meeting between the state chief minister Yogi Adityanath and some politicians from the ruling party.

The news created waves on social media, with many people criticising the Uttar Pradesh government for punishing competence. Others insisted that people were reading too much into the "routine" transfer.

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