Police had deployed large forces along the major junctions of Hosur Road, where major protests took place on Monday.

(Source: Times of India)

In above sentence which I read in new paper past perfect tense has been used. Past perfect tense is used to refer past of past. I am unable to make out two pasts in above sentence.

Does it mean Police were already aware of this protest on Sunday or before protest and already deployed last forces along the major junctions on Sunday or before protest? I mean deployment of forces is first past and taking place of protest is second past.

  • 2
    Lots of text in The Times of India isn't exactly "standard English". The article you're citing repeatedly switches between police and cops, for example, which is somewhat bizarre. And the paragraph immediately following your cite contains Later mobs started gathering near Hebbagodi, located around 20km from city. Once police started chasing them out, the mob started setting vehicles on fire, which sounds unbelievably clunky to me. Past perfect is "acceptable" in this case - but totally unnecessary, and conveys no information that's not contextually implicit anyway. – FumbleFingers Reinstate Monica Apr 19 '16 at 13:48
  • had deployed...took place Police had stationed themselves in anticipation of protests which later took place.. – Tᴚoɯɐuo Apr 19 '16 at 21:53
  • When you use past perfect, the two different past times don't have to be in the same sentence. – Peter Shor Apr 20 '16 at 1:51

If you read the whole article, the timeline is like this:

  • Monday: Demonstrations in Hosur road
  • Early Tuesday: police deployed forces in Hosur Road
  • 9:30 Tuesday: demonstrators started throwing stones at police
  • Later: police started caning demonstrators
  • Later still: demonstrators set fire to cars
  • Even later: police fired over the heads of demonstrators
  • 1pm: the situation was under control again.

The headline report is about the violence (caning, arson, gunfire) sometime after 9:30 on Tuesday: this is therefore the main timeline event. The police had already deployed (Tuesday morning, before 9:30). This is before the main timeline event, hence the use of past perfect.

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