Saharanpur on boil again; one Dalit dead, 2 injured in violence
Saharanpur: Violence once again gripped Saharanpur on Tuesday when groups of Thakurs and Dalits clashed with each other leaving one dead and three others injured in Shabbirpur village of the district.
The deceased and injured persons belong to Dalit community, said a source. The clashes erupted before Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) supremo Mayawati visited the district earlier in the day on Tuesday.
Dalits set the houses of two Thakurs on fire, which enraged the upper-class community who responded with firing and also used sharp weapons, injuring three Dalits, who reportedly belong to Sarsawa region of the district.
It may be mentioned that Thakurs in Shabbirpur village had prevented Dalit residents from installing a BR Ambedkar statue on the premises of a temple. In reply on May 5, a man was killed and 15 others were injured in clashes at the village when Dalits objected to a procession taken out by Thakurs to commemorate the birth anniversary of Rajput king Maharana Pratap.
After Mayawati left the village, a group of people attacked her supporters, in which a man lost his life.
The police, however, has succeeded in conceding the violence, but the situation in the village remains tense. District Magistrate NP Singh and SSP Subhash Chandra Dube, along with heavy police force, are still present in the village. ADG Meerut Zone Ajay Anand and SSP Muzaffarnagar Bablu Kumar have also left for Saharanpur.
It may be recalled that Mayawati had accused the state government of deliberately turning down her request to visit the troubled Saharanpur area in a helicopter, and asserted that BJP will be responsible if anything happens to her or the party members during her road trip.
Mayawati, who had sought permission to visit Saharanpur to meet the Dalit community, said that her request to visit the area in a chopper was turned down by the city’s District Magistrate.
Briefing a press conference at her residence here, Mayawati said, “Now, I am going by road to Saharanpur. If anything happens to me or my party member BJP government will hold the responsibility.”
Mayawati, today, accused BJP of failing to stop its own brigade from attacking weaker sections.
“The district administration of Saharanpur did not allow Dalits to install a bust of Ambedkar, while the procession to mark the birth anniversary of Maharana Pratap was taken out without any permission,” Mayawati said during an interaction with media here. “The Dalits just reacted to this discrimination,” she said.
The former CM of the state also pointed out that Keshav Prasad Maurya, who was being considered as a frontrunner for the post of chief minister during the UP Assembly elections, was later overlooked because of his caste credentials.
She also accused the BJP leaders of misguiding people by referring to the name of BR Ambedkar.
“BJP leaders frequently refer to BR Ambedkar but the followers of Ambedkar are facing injustice. They refer to Ambedkar merely for votes. People will not accept such anti-Dalit party,” she said.
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