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Saharanpur: Uneasy calm at ground zero, over 24 arrested for inciting violence

Dalits in adjoining villages protested against the killing, damaging some shops which led to closure of markets

india Updated: Jun 13, 2017 09:45 IST
Hindustan Times, Saharanpur
Saharanpur,Saharanpur violence,Dalits
Home secretary Mani Prasad Mishra and ADG (law and order) Aditya Mishra interacting with people in violence-hit villages. (HT Photo)

An uneasy calm prevailed in Shabeerpur and neighbouring villages of Saharanpur district following the death of a Dalit youth in caste clashes on Tuesday.

Police stepped up security across the district and arrested over two dozen people on charges of inciting violence.

Ashish, a Dalit youth from Suankheri village in Sarsawa, died of gunshot wounds while eight others suffered injuries when unidentified people attacked a group of Dalits returning from a rally of Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) chief Mayawati.

Dalits in adjoining villages protested against the killing, damaging some shops which led to closure of markets.

The last rites of Ashish were performed in his village amid tight security on Wednesday.

Subhash Chandra Dubey, senior superintendent of police, Saharanpur, said raids were being conducted to arrest the remaining suspects. District magistrate NP Singh said the state government provided a compensation of ~15 lakh to the deceased and ~50,000 to the injured.

BSP’s Saharanpur zonal in-charge Kuldeep Baliyan told HT that a meeting of party leaders has been called to take the stock of the situation. He said a delegation would meet the DM and the SSP to demand immediate arrest of all the suspects and adequate security to Dalits.

On Tuesday, Mayawati met the victims of caste clashes and held the BJP government responsible for violence in the state. She, however, advised Dalits not to take law in their hands and called upon the people of all the castes to work for peace and harmony.

This was the second wave of caste violence in Shabeerpur and adjacent areas after May 5 clashes between Dalits and Thakurs. Over 40 houses of Dalit families were torched following the death of an upper case youth in the caste clashes. The clashes began after a dispute over taking out of a procession by Thakurs to commemorate the birth anniversary of Rajput king Maharana Pratap. Since then, caste violence has grabbed headlines and is being seen as the first law and order challenge for chief minister Yogi Adityanath since the BJP came to power in March.

First Published: May 24, 2017 22:42 IST