In August 2015, a video of a supposedly “drunk” Delhi policeman on the metro went viral. Shared widely on social media, it provoked both derision and anger, leading to the “protector in need of protection” and “Delhi is a land of boors” sort of narratives.
Now, according to a report in the Daily Mail, that the policeman in question – Salim PK, a head constable with the Delhi Police – wasn’t drunk at all.
Salim who is now in his native state of Kerala on three months' medical leave, had apparently suffered a massive stroke three years ago, the report says. “A blockage in his brain caused a brain haemorrhage that left him with a paralysed left side, a contorted face, memory loss, body weakness, and difficulty communicating normally.”
The report elaborates that Samir had a black-out, leading to dizziness that sent him crashing to the floor on the day on which the video was recorded on the train.
Following the release of the video, Salim was suspended from duty, but reinstated by November. The police termed his suspension “spent on duty” once the facts came to light.
Salim has now filed a petition in the Supreme Court seeking compensation for the uploading of the video to social media and the subsequent coverage which has “irreparably maligned his image in the eyes of the public”. He has urged the Centre to help him.