One person was killed and several others, including a police sub-inspector, were injured in a communal clash in rural part of Saharanpur district in western Uttar Pradesh on 19 Feb evening.
The incident occurred in Sarkadi Khumar village on Behta road under Kotwali Dehat area when a procession was being brought out by Hindus on the occasion of Sant Ravidas jayanti. It was interrupted when it reached a Muslim locality which resulted into stone pelting and firing. Muslims were ‘objecting to use of band’ in the procession.
- Hardeva (60) died on the spot while Mithilesh, Phoolmati, Subhash and SI (Sub Inspector) Halvan Singh got injured.
- Superintendent of Police(City) Mahendra Singh Yadav along with force of many police stations reached the spot to control the situation.
- He described the situation in the village as ‘tense’ but ‘under control’.
The police have filed a case in the matter, indicting 13 people from both communities.
Riot after Riot In U.P. Under Akhilesh Yadav Government
U.P has witnessed a spree of riots ever since the Akhilesh Yad led Samjadwadi Party (SP) Government came to power in 2012. Below is a partial list of riots which have engulfed U.P. –
- 14-Jan-2016: A procession related to Makar Sankranti was being taken from Kanpur to Fatehpur. However, as they reached Jehanabad, a Muslim group began pelting stones on them, leading to clashes and death of four individuals.
- 16-Nov-2015: 20 year old Gaurav was severely injured & later died of gunshot wounds inflicted by Muslim youth in a clash which was triggered on Diwali night over bursting of crackers.
- 26-Jul-2014: Violent clashes broke out in Saharanpur in western Uttar Pradesh over a Gurudwara land dispute as groups of Muslims and Sikhs clashed on the streets in broad daylight.
- 10-May-2014: About 50 people were injured in a riot in Meerut when a group of Muslims was installing a water facilitation centre for mosque-goers, near a Jain temple.
- Aug-Sept 2013: Muzaffarnagar riots which erupted after 2 Hindus were killed when they protested the repeated sexual harassment of their school going sisters – the district had witnessed several crimes of rapes against Hindu girls over the preceding 1 year, and nothing has changed on the ground even today.
- 18-Aug-2012: Muslim mob ravaged Buddha park, attacked bystanders and media in Lucknow, after Friday prayers and a ‘protest’ organized by Jamiatul Ulema Hind (JUH) against the “atrocities on Muslims in Assam and Myanmar”.
- One analysis shows that out of 605 communal incidents in U.P. over a 10 week period beginning with the Lok Sabha election results of May 16 2014, 68 — or over 10% — involved Muslims and Hindu Dalits.
What is causing this surge in rioting?
Lazy (or ideologically blinkered?) analysts in mainstream media will tell you that all “riots are a function of politics.” As one of the countless such pieces says “The correlation between elections and communal tensions is as clear as day.” But an unbiased analysis busts this myth –
- Larger clashes erupt after real (not imagined) incidents involving apolitical individuals or groups. Its not just smoke without any fire – the fire is real and the religious intolerance leading to social divides is real.
- Clashes occur through the year – tying it to one or the other local, state or national election which might be occurring at that time is just lazy analysis, and sweeps under the carpet a deeper inquiry into the root cause of such violence which is urgently required.
- Facts speak for themselves – it is Muslim extremists who are repeatedly clashing with Hindus (whether Dalit or otherwise), Sikhs, Jains, Buddhists etc.
- Vote bank politics of parties like SP & Congress has definitely emboldened Muslim fundamentalists, as this sting video (watch video starting at 9 min 25 seconds) shows U.P. police admitting they are afraid to act against Muslim goons who have the backing of the ruling Samajwadi Party (SP).
- Could this increasing Islamist aggression also be tied to the increasing clout of Salafism and Wahhabism strands of Islam, down to the village level in many states of Bharat? And why is no one questioning the role of Islamic organizations like Deoband seminary (based in Deoband, West U.P.), Tablighi Jamaat (started in Mewat, close to Delhi), Jamiat Ulema-e-Hind (headquarter in Delhi), Jamaat e Islami Hind (headquarter in Delhi), and controversial Islamic preachers like Zakir Naik?
This perceptive piece by Hindu Dalit scholar Abhinav Prakash has captured the hypocrisy of how communal riots targeting Hindu Dalits are down-played by liberal intelligentsia and media, while cases like the suicide of Rohith Vemula are hijacked and distorted by parties like Congress, AAP, CPM and TMC to show themselves as defenders of Dalits against ‘Brahminical Hindu hegemony’ –
“In addition, increasing Islamic aggression on the ground is pushing rural and lower-middle class Dalits towards BJP as its Dalits who are on the receiving end of the Islamic violence. And whenever there is a clash between Dalits and Muslims, secular and leftist forces automatically join the Muslims under the twisted ‘secularism’ of India. Then suddenly, Dalits become part of ‘majoritarian Hindu fascism’ and this assertion is by the same people who otherwise spend their day and night arguing that Dalits are not part of the Hindu society and Dharma!”
The message is clear for Hindus – whatever be the present-day social & political divides within Hindu society, our collective safety depends on developing a Hindu consciousness such that an assault on any Hindu anywhere is met with protests by Hindus everywhere.