The Muzaffarnagar administration committed a series of mistakes that has left the city and surrounding areas, mainly villages, burning with communal hatred and violence.
On Monday evening, two more bodies were recovered taking the official death toll to 31.
It all began on August 27, when two Jat youths killed a Muslim youth after an alleged eve-teasing incident. The crowd swelled, cornered the two youths and lynched them to death.
“On the night of the incident, the police had rounded up between 8 and 10 persons on the suspicion of being involved in the murder of the Jat youths but they were later let off under pressure from the ruling Samajwadi party,” said a source. The Jats claimed that only two boys were responsible for the killing of the Muslim youth but the police registered an FIR naming some of their relatives as well.
“The Jats demanded the arrest of persons responsible for killing two youths from their community and the removal of names of those from the FIR who they claim were not involved in killing of the Muslim youth. They called a Mahapanchayat or meeting of community leaders on August 31 to press for the demands.
“It was local criminal clash which could have nipped immediately had the administration taken timely action,” said the source.
Meanwhile on August 30, some Muslim leaders gathered at Shaheed Chownk in Muzaffarnagar despite a prohibitory order under section 144 and demanded that the Mahapanchayat should not permitted.
But the administration allowed the Jat Mahapachayat on August 31 in which another ultimatum till September 7 was given to the administration to meet their demands.
The administration only woke up after the violence of September 7 wherein Jats were attacked when they returning from Mahapanchayat and the retaliatory attacks on Muslims the next day.
Now the administration is saying a investigation is on to remove the names of those who were named for allegedly killing of the Muslim youth on August 27. District magistrate Kaushal Raj Sharma told HT on Monday that some of the names have been removed from the FIR and for the rest the investigation is on.