Communal tension was palpable in Bijnor district of western Uttar Pradesh on Saturday after a 16-year-old boy was killed and his father critically injured in Nayagaon village of the same district on Friday. The district goes to poll in the second phase of the Uttar Pradesh assembly election on February 15.
The accused are Muslims.
Union minister and BJP leader Sanjeev Balyan has threatened to stage an indefinite sit-in if the accused are not arrested within 24 hours.
Other leaders and workers of political parties staged a sit-in with the villagers and demanded immediate arrest of the accused.
Angry villagers damaged Rashtriya Lok Dal candidate Rahul Singh’s village when he went to the village show his solidarity with them.
Chief minister Akhilesh Yadav has released a compensation cheque of Rs 25 lakh for the family but it will be released only after seeking permission from the Election Commission.
Deputy inspector general of police (Moradabad range) Omkar Singh said teams were formed to arrest the accused and raids were on in different locations.
Some unidentified people stabbed a farmer Sanjay and his 16-year-old son Vishal at Nayagaon when the farmer had gone to irrigate his field. Vishal was shot three times and died on the spot. Sanjay is battling for life in hospital.
Iqbal, former head of Penda village, along with seven others has been named the main accused in the murder of the boy. Iqbal is allegedly a close aide of Samajwadi Party MLA Ruchiveera who is pitted against Suchi Chaudhary, the BJP candidate from Bijnor.
The incident comes nearly five months after killing of three Muslims in Penda village on September 16 last year over an eve-teasing incident.
Thirty-two people were named in that case, including BJP leader Mausam Chaudhary, husband of Suchi Chaudhary.
Suchi had delivered an emotional speech at Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s rally in Bijnor on Friday, claiming that her husband had been framed.
Suchi Choudhary has blamed the chief minister for shifting him to Maharajganj jail during the election without seeking permission from the poll panel.