Dadri villagers chase away Kejriwal and media

Villagers complained that their daily life has been hit by the constant stream of politicians

GN Bureau | October 3, 2015


#arvind kejriwal   #muslim   #mohammad ikhlaq  

Delhi chief minister Arvind Kejriwal was stopped from entering Bisara village near Dadri town of Uttar Pradesh by local residents on Saturday. The residents have also banned the media from entering the village, where a Muslim man 50-year-old Mohammad Ikhlaq was lynched to death and his 22-year-old son Danish was critically injured after a 200-member mob barged into their house on Monday night following rumours that the family had consumed beef.

Kejriwal, who was accompanied by other AAP leaders Sanjay Singh, Ashutosh and Kumar Vishwas was not allowed to enter the village by the villagers. They were later taken to NTPC guest house in Dadri by the administration. Kejriwal was unhappy and took to Twitter to express his sentiments. He questioned why the local administration stopped him from meeting Iklakh's family when leaders like Asaduddin Owaisi were allowed to meet them.

In the morning, a group of villagers led by women drove out media and other visitors, including AAP volunteers, from the village. The villagers complained that their daily life has been hit by the constant stream of politicians, their entourage and media.

Many locals are protesting against VIP movement. For sake of Delhi CM's protection we escorted him to a guest house, said Dadri’s superintendent of police Sanjay Singh. When the situation normalises, “we will decide on future course of action,” he said.

Yesterday, All India Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen (AIMIM) chief Asaduddin Owaisi and local lawmaker Mahesh Sharma of the BJP visited the village.

Ikhlaq was beaten to death by a mob in Dadri on the outskirts of Delhi on Monday night. He and his 22-year-old son were dragged from their house by around 100 villagers and beaten with bricks. Half an hour before the attack, an announcement was allegedly made at a temple nearby that a calf had been slaughtered and its carcass had been found near a transformer.

Killing cows is illegal in Uttar Pradesh. The police are investigating who started the rumours in a part of western Uttar Pradesh that is prone to trouble at the slightest provocation.

The incident sparked a bitter political blame game among the parties. While the ruling Samajwadi Party (SP) has accused the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) of deliberately inciting violence ahead of 2017 Assembly polls in Uttar Pradesh as part of efforts to polarise people, the saffron party has termed it a failure of the state government in maintaining law and order.

Six people have been arrested in connection with the lynching and a manhunt has been launched to arrest the rest named accused in the case.

Union minister Sharma said political parties should refrain from giving a communal colour to the incident and the CBI must conduct an impartial investigation into the incident. He also urged the state to punish the guilty.

Hyderabad MP Owaisi alleged that Ikhlaq was targetted because of his religion as part of a pre-planned conspiracy. Owaisi alleged that the Akhilesh Yadav-led SP government was investigating a piece of meat instead of nabbing the attackers. "They are investigating a piece of meat and are treating the victim as the accused. This was not an attack over meat. He has been killed in the name of religion. This was a preplanned, coldblooded killing. It cannot be an accident," he added.

Lashing out at Sharma, Owaisi said: "Mahesh Sharma is the culture minister of the country and it is unfortunate that the minister does not have the courage and intellectual honesty to condemn the incident unconditionally."

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