8 injured in clashes during Kanwar Yatra in Bareilly
There was a skirmish when a group of villagers tried to stop Kanwariyas. An argument over the use of loud music reportedly led to clashes.india Updated: Jul 23, 2017 08:51 IST
At least eight people, including two policemen, have been injured in clashes between Kanwariyas and Khelam villagers, mostly Muslims, in Aonla, in Bareilly district, Uttar Pradesh.
Four people have been arrested and Aliganj station house officer has been suspended for failing to ensure peace. A written clarification has also been sought from him. Additional police force has been deployed in the area and a case has been registered against 250 people for clashes.
According to reports, a skirmish took place when a group of villagers, suspected Muslims, allegedly stopped Kanwaryias. “The first skirmish was reported around 7pm (Friday) in which a couple of Kanwaryias were injured,” said Bareilly senior superintendent of police Joginder Kumar.
Later, there was an argument over the use of loud music, leading to the clashes. The villagers reportedly pelted stones at the pilgrims from their rooftops.
Subsequently, more Kanwariyas got involved in the alleged clashes. People from both sides were injured, and also the police personnel. “Two constables and an S-I (sub-inspector) of a nearby police post received injuries,” Kumar said.
The SSP, district magistrate and other officials held meetings with the two groups, asking them to ensure peace.
“The locals have agreed to allow Kanwariyas to pass through the village using the same route until an alternate route is marked,” said district magistrate RV Singh. “The local police have also been told to ensure that Kanwariyas do not play loud music,” he added.
Although the Kanwar Yatra concluded on Sawan Shivratri on Friday, some devotees are still offering Gangajal to Lord Shiva in Bareilly.