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Saharanpur violence: Mobile internet banned, DM, SSP suspended

Last updated on: May 24, 2017 23:42 IST

The Uttar Pradesh government has suspended district magistrate and senior superintendent of police of violence-hit Saharanpur, while Deputy inspector general and divisional commissioner have been transferred, the official spokesman said on Wednesday.

Mobile internet and messaging services were also suspended in the district, with officials saying the decision was taken to maintain peace and ensure law and order.

"In view of the present situation, CRPC section 144 has been invoked to control law and order. All telecom operators have been asked to suspend all forms of mobile internet and messeging services until further orders," N P Singh, outgoing district magistrate, said in an order.

"The decision has been taken to maintain peace and law and order," he said.

However, the order is not binding on police and administrative officials.

Those not following the order will be liable for action under section 188 of Indian Penal Code, Singh said.

Violence erupted in the volatile district for the second day on Wednesday when unidentified gunmen shot and seriously injured a member of the upper-caste Thakur community, which is embroiled in a bloody conflict with the Dalits.

The incident took place on Janta road in Janakpuri area. Pradeep Chauhan was shot at near Punwarka block by some motorcycle-borne men, Superintendent of Police Prabal Pratap Singh said.

Chauhan was rushed to the district hospital, from where he was referred to a speciality centre.

Members of the Thakur community protested against the incident outside the district hospital.

Earlier in the day, some persons attacked two men while they were sleeping near a brick kiln in Mirzapur village, the police said.

Nitin was shot at, while Yashpal was severely beaten up by the attackers. They have suffered serious injuries and have been admitted to the district hospital.

The police, however, said the incident cannot be linked to the ongoing caste violence.

Meanwhile, a four-member team led by Home Secretary Mani Prasad Mishra and comprising Additional Director General (Law and Order) Aditya Mishra, IG Special Task Force Amitabh Yash and DG (Security) Vijay Bhushan arrived in Saharanpur on Wednesday.

The ADG said that the police are closely monitoring the situation and keeping a tight vigil on inflammatory messages on social media.

Aditya said he met those injured in the violence and recuperating in the district hospital and assured them of the best treatment possible.

He said there is a trust deficit among the people of different communities and the administration is working to reduce it.

The official warned of strict action against those trying to take the law into their hands.

Some unidentified persons had on Tuesday set fire to at least 12 houses of Thakurs in Shabbirpur village ahead of the arrival of Bahujan Samaj Party chief Mayawati there.

A mob later attacked a group of people returning from a rally of Mayawati, killing Ashish, 24, who hailed from Sarsawa town, on the spot and injuring four others.

The Uttar Pradesh government has announced Rs 15 lakh as compensation to the family of the man and Rs 50,000 each to those injured.

IMAGE: BSP chief Mayawati interacts with violence-hit people in Sabbeerpur village in Saharanpur district. Photograph: PTI Photo

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