A day after the caste violence broke out in Saharanpur in Uttar Pradesh, where a police post was burnt and over 20 vehicles torched, two police officers were transferred on Wednesday from their posts.
Superintendent of Police (City) Sanjay Singh and Superintendent of Police (Rural) Rafeeq Ahmed have been transferred from Saharanpur, official sources said. Prabal Pratap Singh is the new SP (City), Vidya Sagar takes over from Ahmed.
Several instances of stone pelting and clashes were reported yesterday from across Saharanpur, which has been witnessing caste-based violence since May 5. However, peace prevailed in the city on Wednesday.
Police said that an organisation of Dalits had sought permission to hold a ‘mahapanchayat’ on May 9 in Gandhi Park to demand compensation and relief for those affected in last week’s inter-caste clashes.
Senior Superintendent of Police Subhash Chand Dubey said district administration did not permit any such gathering and police acted against those gathered for the ’mahapanchayat’ ,which led to tension and a stampede like situation.
Several commuters were manhandled and their vehicles set on fire. Some media persons were also beaten up and their vehicles damaged. Police teams were pelted with stones. A police ‘chowki’ was set ablaze while several police vehicles were damaged. The protesters also blocked the Chakrota road near Nazirpura, while a building was burnt down on Malhipur road.
Last week, one person was killed and 15 people, including a police officer, were injured as members of two castes clashed over loud music being played during a procession.
The incident led to more violence with brickbats and arson. While 15 to 20 Dalit houses were torched, many vehicles, including those of the police, were torched.