Phagwara clash: Another Hindu outfit leader arrested
The Kapurthala police on Wednesday arrested another Hindu right-wing leader for the clash that took place here on April 13 over the renaming a roundabout.
The accused has been identified as Sunny Batta, a member of the Bharatiya Janata Yuva Morcha (BJYM), which is youth wing of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP). The number of arrested Hindu leaders has now risen to six.
Superintendent of police (SP headquarters) Jaskiranjit Singh Teja, who is heading the special investigation team (SIT) probing the case, said thatSunny Batta’s involvement in the clash came to the fore after a probe.
He said that a case under Sections 302 (murder), 307 (attempt to murder), 295 A (hurting religious sentiments), 392 (robbery), 353 (assault), 186, 427, 148 and 149 of the Indian Penal Code and provisions of the Arms Act and the National Highways Act along with Scheduled Castes and Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Act has been registered against him.
His arrest came a day after Punjab BJP chief and Rajya Sabha member Shwait Malik blamed the Capt Amarinder Singh government for the clash between Dalit groups and members of the “upper caste” Hindu right-wing groups.
“It is evident from the police inquiry that BJP and RSS leaders were behind this clash. The BJP is trying to create communal tension ahead of the upcoming Lok Sabha elections,” former Punjab minister and Kapurthala president of the district Congress committee Joginder Singh Mann said.
This is the sixth Hindu outfit leader who has been arrested by the police for their ‘involvement’ in the clash.
Earlier, Akhil Bharatiya Hindu Suraksha Samiti leader Sushil Kumar Tinka and four others, including Shiv Sena (Bal Thackeray) senior state vice-president Inderjit Karwal, Akhil Bharatiya Hindu Suraksha Samiti state president Deepak Bhardwaj, Shiv Sena leader Shivi Batta and Bharatiya Janata Yuva Morcha leader Rajiv Chahal were arrested and are lodged in jail.
A clash had taken place between Dalits and members of Hindu right-wing organisations over the renaming of ‘Gol Chowk’ to Samvidhan Chowk on April 13. A Dalit youth, Yashwant Bobby, was injured in the clash. He succumbed to bullet injuries on April 29.
In this case, five Dalits were also arrested by the police, but they had not included Section 303 (murder) and 307 (attempt to murder) against them.