Riots: SP government on defensive over police inaction
The SP Government has been forced on to the backfoot since the Muzaffarnagar flare-up is not a freak incident, but a well-organised and planned one, which claimed the lives of as many as 23 people and left several others wounded.
SP chief Mulayam Singh Yadav, who harbours dreams of becoming Prime Minister in the post-2014 LS polls scenario on the basis of the performance of the Akhilesh Yadav-led SP Government in the state, met senior officers and issued the necessary directives on Sunday.
Akhilesh, who did the perfunctory job of holding the meeting,however,failed to brief the media on the communal tensions in the state.
The Chief Minister has announced compensation to the kin of the deceased and also appealed for communal peace and harmony. The Opposition parties – the BSP, Congress and BJP – have strongly condemned the violence, besides flaying the Akhilesh Government over its failure to check the continuing communal clashes in the state since the SP Government came to power in the state last year.
Meanwhile, with the two dominant communities of the region, – Jats and Gujjars – bristling with anger at the SP Government’s failure to protect them from the brazen and organised assault on their lives and property and the police remaining a mute spectator, the Uttarakhand and Delhi governments, in the vicinity of the violence-hit Muzaffarnagar, sounded an alert and cautioned the police and paramilitary forces to remain on alert to tackle any possible flare-up.
Earlier, a maha panchayat was convened on Saturday to protest against the mindless violence which was triggered by an act of eve-teasing, involving a boy and girl from different communities – Jats and Gujjars.
And people from the nearby districts gathered to decide their future course of action to avenge the killings. Prominent among those who addressed the gathering included former BJP Minister Hukum Singh.
As soon as the maha panchayat concluded and the crowd started to disperse, there were attacks from all-around, in a well-organised manner. There was a complete breakdown of the state machinery and the police remained rooted to the spot as mere onlookers.
And in the process the police allowed the rioters to resort to mindless violence, killing and maiming people at will.
The UP government is facing flak for its alleged partisanship in dealing with the situation.