NSW police say they will deploy a “highly visible and mobile response to ensure the free movement of people and traffic, and target criminal, anti-social, or other behaviour which may impact of the safety of the community.”
Many flyers and messages are circulating on social media relating to an event at Harris Park on Friday, 15 October 2021. One such flyer says a ‘Victory Rally’ will be organised from Sydney’s Harris Park to Murugan Temple on 15 October.
An NSW Police Force spokesperson told NRI Affairs that the NSW Police Force is aware of information circulating on social media relating to a proposed rally at Harris Park on Friday, 15 October 2021.
“A Form 1 has not been submitted for this event, nor has the NSW Police Force been approached by anyone purporting to be organising or involved in the event,” said the spokesperson adding, “Police will deploy a highly visible and mobile response to ensure the free movement of people and traffic, and target criminal, anti-social, or other behaviour which may impact of the safety of the community.”
“The operation will include General Duties officers from Parramatta and Cumberland Police Area Commands, with support from North West and South West Metropolitan Regions, Police Transport Command and Traffic and Highway Patrol Command.”
NRI Affairs approached Yogesh Khattar, whose name and phone number has been published on the flyer ‘for further information’, for a comment. He told NRI Affairs that he has not organised this event.
“A Tik-Tok image is being circulated on social media with my photo and contact details on it, claiming that there is a rally being organised on 15 October 2021 in support of Vishal Jood. The image is fraudulent,” Mr Khattar told NRI Affairs.
“No such rally is being organised on 15 October 2021. I am not the author of the post. My photograph and personal details have been used in the image without my knowledge or consent,” he said adding, “I have made a formal complaint about this fraudulent post to police today.”
Vishal Jood, arrested in April for the acts of violence, was sentenced to twelve months in prison by a Parramatta Court in Sydney in September. The sentence carries a six-month non-parole period. Jood will become eligible for parole on 15 October.
Jood had pleaded guilty to three charges, including ‘assault’, ‘occasioning actual bodily harm in the company of others’ and ‘armed with an intention to commit indictable offence’, while the Crown dropped the other charges.
The issue has made news headlines in India where it has been claimed Vishal Jood was acting to protect the Indian flag from being dishonoured by ‘Khalistanis’. The Haryana Chief Minister had intervened in the matter and written to India’s Foreign Minister to get Vishal released. In a tweet, CM’s office wrote, “CM @mlkhattar spoke to External Affairs Minister, Shri @DrSJaishankar for the immediate release of Vishal Jude, a Haryanvi youth lodged in Australia’s jail & appealed for immediate intervention in the matter. The Foreign Minister has conveyed India’s concern to the Australian Embassy”.
A group of Jood’s Harvanvi community members in India, with the support from political leaders, had carried out a campaign demanding Jood’s release.
Supporters had cited Jood’s nationalism and his defence of the Indian flag as the reason for his arrest and asked for consular support from the Indian Government to assist Jood with his court case.
Among the political leaders who tweeted in support of Jood were Bharatiya Janata Party leader Kapil Mishra, Tejinder Pal Singh Bagga, BJP’s spokesperson from Delhi and Dr Subhash Sharma, BJP General Secretary, Punjab.
Olympian wrestler Yogeshwar Dutt, who is also from Haryana, was also among the public figures who tweeted in support of Jood, as was Neeraj Chopra, who later went on to win a gold medal at the Tokyo Olympics.