Haryana violence: Bajrangi brandished weapons, attacked cops, say Nuh police - Hindustan Times
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Haryana violence: Bajrangi brandished weapons, attacked cops, say Nuh police

Aug 16, 2023 11:54 PM IST

The Vishva Hindu Parishad (VHP) dissociated itself from Bittu Bajrangi on Wednesday, and said that he was not a member of Bajrang Dal

Cow vigilante Raj Kumar, better known as Bittu Bajrangi, who was arrested on Tuesday from his home in Haryana’s Faridabad, was sent on one-day police remand on Wednesday by a local court, said police officers familiar with the matter.

Raj Kumar, better known as Bittu Bajrangi, at the district court in Nuh in Gurugram on Wednesday. (Parveen Kumar/HT Photo)
Raj Kumar, better known as Bittu Bajrangi, at the district court in Nuh in Gurugram on Wednesday. (Parveen Kumar/HT Photo)

Investigators on Wednesday said they have booked Bajrangi and 20 others for allegedly brandishing weapons during the Brajmandal Dharmik Yatra. The annual procession was attacked in the Nalhar village of Nuh district on July 31, leading to communal violence in which six people died and 88 others were injured.

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Bajrangi released a video a day before the yatra provoking the Muslims. The investigators, however, clarified that he was not arrested over the inflammatory video, but brandishing weapons such as swords and tridents with a group of 20 people during the procession. The group also allegedly snatched the weapons from the police after they were seized from them, the officer said.

Police said Bajrangi has been booked under sections 148 (rioting, being armed with a deadly weapon or with anything used as a weapon of offence), 149 (unlawful assembly), 186 (obstructing public servant in discharge of public function), 332 (voluntarily causing hurt to deter public servant from his duty), 353 (assault or criminal force to deter public servant), 397 (robbery, or dacoity, with attempt to cause death or grievous hurt), 395 (dacoity), and 506 (criminal intimidation) of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) and sections of the arms act at Sadar Nuh police station on Tuesday.

The investigators said of the 20 people who accompanied Bajrangi during the July 31 yatra, 15 have been identified and booked under the same IPC sections. Five others were yet to be identified, they added. However, none of the 20 suspects have been arrested so far.

They said that they have “strong evidence” to establish Bajrangi’s involvement in the Nuh violence. They added that he will be asked to identify his associates and other details related to the communal flare up.

Bajrangi, 45, is the founder president of a cow vigilante outfit, Gau Raksha Bajrang Force, based in Faridabad.

Officer said Nuh additional superintendent of police Usha Kundu spotted Bajrangi and the group with weapons during the yatra. “Despite orders not to carry weapons, they carried swords and tridents and recorded videos. Our team spotted them 300 metres away from the Nalhar temple and seized weapons from them. But the group of nearly 20 people intercepted my vehicle in which the weapons were kept, and snatched them,” said Kundu.

The Nuh police have already filed 60 first information reports (FIRs) and arrested 242 suspects.

Meanwhile, the Vishva Hindu Parishad (VHP) dissociated itself from Bajrangi on Wednesday, and said that he was not a member of Bajrang Dal -- the youth wing of VHP. It also said that the provocative video posted by Bajrangi, cited as one of the reasons behind the July 31 violence in Nuh, was not “appropriate”.

In a post on X (formerly Twitter), VHP wrote, “Raj Kumar alias Bittu Bajrangi is being presented as a Bajrang Dal activist. He has never been involved with the Bajrang Dal. VHP does not find the content of the alleged videos by Bittu appropriate.”

VHP spokesperson Vinod Bansal said that Bajrang Dal has no connection with Bajrangi. “He was never formally a part of the outfit and he was using the name of the organisation without authorisation,” he said.

The Nuh police have filed 60 first information reports (FIRs) and arrested 242 suspects in connection with the Nuh violence.

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