Authorities imposed curfew in Vidisha town on Sunday following arson and stone pelting mainly by Bajrang Dal supporters after one of their men was allegedly stabbed to death.
The 23-year-old Deepak Kushwah allegedly died of stab wounds at Baksariya. He was said to be attacked by a group of men around 3 pm on Saturday.
External affairs minister Sushma Swaraj represents Vidisha Lok Sabha constituency in Lok Sabha.
The administration has deployed heavy additional police force and a contingent of Rapid Action Force (RAF) as a precautionary measure in the area. Police in the neighbouring districts, including Bhopal have been asked to remain on standby to dash to Vidisha if required.
On Sunday, violence erupted when the victim’s body was being taken home for his funeral. Agitated Bajrang Dal supporters set afire three thatched houses in a slum belonging to the community of the main accused, two trucks and a jeep and indulged in stone pelting. At least three persons sustained injuries in the stone pelting.
“Curfew was imposed in the city after arson and stone pelting. It had a communal angle too. As many as 11 people were arrested since yesterday. Now, the situation is under control,” collector of Vidisha Anil Suchari told Hindustan Times.
According to police Deepak Kushwah allegedly involved in five criminal cases and had an old enmity with his attackers. About four days ago they had a clash but police failed to take action. Of the 13 accused, 11 have been arrested.
“Had police taken action on time the incident of Saturday would have been avoided,” said former Member of Parliament and Congress leader Pratapbhanu Sharma.
Locals say the immediate reason for the clash was sale of liquor but the genesis of tension between two communities can be traced to a row between two sides on construction of shops at the idgah and saffron brigade’s demand for action against Rajya Sabha MP Chaudhary Munabbar Saleem after his personal assistant was arrested on espionage charges recently.
Saleem is an MP from Uttar Pradesh elected on a Samajwadi Party but lives in Vidisha. He is considered close to SP leader Mohd Azam Khan.