Three days after violent clashes claimed the life of one and injured many in Uttar Pradesh’s Kasganj city, the state government on Monday transferred the Superintendent of Police (SP) Sunil Kumar Singh to the Police Training School in Meerut – replacing him with Piyush Srivastava.
While an uneasy calm prevailed in Kasganj on Monday, prohibitory orders still remain in effect in the area and the security forces maintained a strict vigil to avoid further violence. Terming the incident as a “blot” on the state, Uttar Pradesh Governor Ram Naik asked the government to ensure such incidents don’t recur.
Speaking to reporters in Lucknow, Naik said, “Whatever happened in Kasganj was not good. The incident there is a ‘kalank’ (blot) for UP. The government is probing the incident. It should initiate effective measures to ensure that such incidents are not repeated.”
Violence erupted in the Kasganj city of UP after a “Tiranga bike rally” by activists of the RSS-backed students’ groups, ABVP and the Vishwa Hindu Parishad reached Baddunagar locality where minority community was celebrating Republic Day. Clashes allegedly began after the men in bike rally raised provocative slogans, taunting Muslims for refusing to chant Vande Mataram.
Shots were fired and Chandan Gupta (22), who was hit by a bullet, died. The parents of the commerce student said that Gupta was involved in several non-profit activities like blanket distribution and blood donation drives.
According to the police, “In this (firing), Chandan was killed and Naushad was injured. Naushad was referred to Aligarh for treatment.”
Though UP Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath on Sunday declared an ex gratia of Rs 20 lakh to the family of Chandan, his father and mother refused the monetary compensation from the state and demanded a martyr status for their son.
“He [Chandan] must have thought that since these rallies were carried out every year, this time also the rally would pass peacefully through the Muslim dominated area. But they caught my son and beat him. He was not part of any outfit like ABVP. Police didn’t kill my son, Muslims did. They fired 50-60 rounds and pelted stones on the rally. We don’t want any money or compensation. We want the status of martyr for him,” said Chandan’s mother
While around 112 people have been sent to jail under various sections of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) for their alleged role in the violence, internet services had been suspended in tensed areas of western Uttar Pradesh till 10 pm on Sunday, amid a curfew imposed after the Friday clashes.
On Sunday, Additional Director General of Police (Law and Order) Anand Kumar said, “In all, three shops have been damaged, by pouring petrol below the shutter and setting it afire. Fire was also set on the seats of two private buses, but the engines of the buses are intact. One empty kiosk was also set ablaze by the anti-social elements. In the evening, the seats of an abandoned car were set ablaze.”