Saharanpur violence: 25 held, officials suspended
Twenty-five persons were arrested and four top officials suspended over the violence in Uttar Pradesh's Saharanpur on Wednesday, a day after clashes between Dalits-Rajputs left one dead.
According to sources, Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath is reported to have taken a grim view of the return of caste clashes between Dalits and Rajputs and ordered the suspension of District Magistrate N.P. Singh, Senior Superintendent of Police Subhash Chandra Dubey as well as a Sub-Divisional Magistrate and a Circle Officer of the police.
The move came after a team of senior officials, rushed to the violence hit villages by Chief Minister Adityanath, found the district officials guilty of dereliction of duty and carelessness in responding to the initial violence. Shabbirpur village has witnessed caste conflict thrice since April.
Home Secretary Mani Prasad Mishra, who was part of the team sent by the Chief Minister to Shabbirpur, where over 20 people were also injured in sword attacks, said that adequate security deployment has been done.
"Situation is under control, we are monitoring everything and will be camping here (at the scene) till normalcy returns," Mishra added.
A team of four officials including the Home Secretary, Additional Director General (ADG) Law and Order Aditya Mishra, Inspector General (Special Task Force) Amitabh Yash and DG Security Vijay Bhushan were flown down in a special plane to the violence-hit area late on Tuesday night.
The area has been on the boil since April 20, when a clash between the two communities singed the region.
The violence erupted again on Tuesday night after a visit by Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) chief Mayawati. Before her visit there was stone pelting at a settlement of the Rajputs and some houses were set on fire. As soon as Mayawati left, the Rajputs hit back, and in the firing that ensued one person was killed and over two dozen injured.
Some unidentified persons set fire to at least 12 houses of Thakurs in Shabbirpur village ahead of the arrival of Mayawati there, SP (City) Prabal Pratap said.
A state of high alert has been sounded across Uttar Pradesh and all sit-ins, protests and demonstrations have been banned. Provincial Armed Constabulary (PAC) and Rapid Action Force (RAF) companies have been deployed in violence-hit villages.
The Uttar Pradesh government will provide Rs 15 lakh as compensation to the family of a man killed in caste violence in Saharanpur district. The injured will be given Rs 50,000 each as compensation.