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Asmita Dwivedi | HENB | Vidisha | Nov 14, 2016:: Local Administration imposed curfew in Vidisha town on Sunday following arson, stone pelting and sporadic communal clashes between Hindus and Muslims after a Bajrang Dal activists was allegedly stabbed to death by some Jihadi elements.
A local bandh was observed at Baksariya and around Vidisha locality on Sunday protesting the murder of Hindu activist and normalcy in life yet to return even in Monday as the reports came in.
The 23-year-old Hindu activist and Bajrangdal office bearer Deepak Kushwah allegedly died of stab wounds by Muslim goons at Baksariya. He was said to be attacked by a group of Quran followers around 3 pm on Saturday. Deepak was stabbed several times with sharpened knife as told.
External affairs minister Sushma Swaraj represents Vidisha Lok Sabha constituency in Lok Sabha.
The administration has deployed heavy additional police force and a contingent of Rapid Action Force (RAF) as a precautionary measure in the area. Police in the neighbouring districts, including Bhopal have been asked to remain on standby to dash to Vidisha if required.
On Sunday, violence erupted when the dead body of Deepak was being taken home for his funeral. Agitated Bajrang Dal supporters set afire three thatched houses in a slum belonging to the community of the main accused Muslim gang comprising Kallu, Tippu, Naved, Saddam, Nadeem and Afjal. Reported that the agitated Hindu protesters also set afire two trucks and a jeep and indulged in stone pelting. At least three persons sustained injuries in the stone pelting. Vehicles of Fire Brigade of Vidisha Nagar Palika were also damaged by unruly mobs.
Police took Kallu, Tippu, Naved, Saddam, Nadeem and Afjal in remand after charged IPC 302 (Punishment for murder) and booked some other person viz. Uvesh, Ikbal, Kishwar, Ajay, Hasim, Imran and Shanu under IPC 147 (Punishment for rioting), IPC 148 (Rioting, armed with deadly weapon) and IPC 294 (Obscene acts and songs), as per source report.
The brother of the murdered Hindu youth, Rakesh told HENB, “there was an attack by the same Muslim gang on Deepak just three days before the murder. The matter of attack was reported to the police but they took no action. The murder could be averted if the gang was taken to custody after the allegation made earlier”.
According to police Deepak Kushwah was also allegedly involved in five criminal cases and had an old enmity with his attackers. About four days ago they had a clash but police failed to take action. Of the 13 accused, 11 have been arrested.
“Had police taken action on time the incident of Saturday would have been avoided,” said former Member of Parliament and Congress leader Pratapbhanu Sharma.
Locals say the immediate reason for the clash was sale of liquor but the genesis of tension between two communities can be traced to a row between two sides on construction of shops at the idgah and saffron brigade’s demand for action against Rajya Sabha MP Chaudhary Munabbar Saleem after his personal assistant was arrested on espionage charges recently.
Saleem is an MP from Uttar Pradesh elected on a Samajwadi Party but lives in Vidisha. He is considered close to SP leader Mohd Azam Khan.
“Curfew was imposed in the city after arson and stone pelting. It had a communal angle too. As many as 11 people were arrested since yesterday. Now, the situation is under control,” collector of Vidisha Anil Suchari told the media.
Curfew was imposed in Kotwali area of the Vidisha town after the restrictions failed to quell the violence. Authorities earlier prohibited any gathering of four or more persons, slapping orders under Section 144 of the CrPc, when the situation in the town worsened following stone pelting by Bajrang Dal members. Many persons, among them several policemen, were injured in the incident.
Meanwhile, North Bhopal MLA Arif Aqueel appealed to people to maintain peace in town in the wake of the communal tension.
“The victims of arson should make a representation to the competent authority for compensation,” said Mr. Aqueel who is the lone Muslim legislator in MP.