NATIONAL POLICE Chief Pol.Gen. Chakthip Chaijinda told a House of Representative committee today (August 20) that the police force is staying neutral and not taking sides while only performing its duty in arresting students, Voice TV and Sanook.com reported.
Members of the House committee vetting the fiscal 2021 budget and considering the budget for the Royal Thai Police today took this opportunity to ask the National Police Chief some tough questions.
Two Kao Klai Party MPs, Mr. Worapob Wiriyaroj and Mr Pakornwut Udomphiphatkul, asked Pol.Gen.Chakthip about observation that in making arrests threats had been made to students and general public and mobile phone signals had been cut off at the rallies.
Pol. Gen. Chakthip explained that he had ordered his officers to not put up conditions and stay neutral.
He added that the world has changed with there being cameras everywhere and every decision the police makes has to be carefully considered.
He also said that there are laws regulating the duties police must perform and even if they do not want to make arrests, they have to do so as stated in Section 157.
He also denied police had disconnected mobile phone signals at the rallies, pointing out that these signals could get jammed if over 12,000 people assemble in one place with cell phone signal jammers not deployed. Even the police could not use their mobile phones at these gatherings.
He added that prior to one of the gathering police had found a suspicious object, this is grey-colour soil which is a substance that can be used for igniting. With this kind of a warning police had to be prepared.
Pol. Gen. Chakthip added that he is not embroiled in the conflict and policemen have to take care of all the people in the country and they should not assume the worst.
Even when students clashed with police he told them to remain patient.
Top: Pol. Gen. Chakthip addressing the House committee vetting fiscal 2021 budget today. Thai headline says, “We had to do it.” Photo: Sanook.com