LUCKNOW: In the wake of a spate in caste conflagrations during the last few days and subsequent enforcement of Section 144 putting restriction even on the political visits to Saharanpur, authorities on Friday denied permission to Congress vice-president Rahul Gandhi to visit the trouble-torn district. The Congress leader was contemplating a visit to violence-hit Shabbirpur village in the district on Saturday.
According to Saharanpur senior superintendent of police Babloo Kumar, the Congress leader was not given permission to visit the village in order to avoid any untoward incident in the village.
BSP chief Mayawati had visited the strife torn village on last Tuesday following which there was a fresh flare-up between the two warring factions. In the fresh spell of violence on Tuesday and Wednesday, two persons were shot dead and about a dozen were left injured.
Consequently, the state government cracked down on the district authorities and suspended district magistrate NP Singh and senior superintendent of police Subhash Chandra Dubey who was replaced by Babloo Kumar, while Pramod Kumar Pandey was sent to Saharanpur as the new DM in place of NP Singh.
Saharanpur has witnessed widespread caste-based clashes his month. Violence first broke out in Saharanpur about 40 days ago on April 20 following a procession to mark Ambedkar Jayanti. On May 5, a person was killed and 15 people were injured in clashes between two caste factions as Dalits of Shabbirpur village objected to a procession being taken out by the thakurs on the occasion of Maharana Pratap Jayanti. About a dozen police vehicles were set ablaze and 12 policemen were injured which was again sparked off on May 9.
In the latest development, while the centre has asked the state government to send a detailed report on Sharanpur violence, it has also sent 400 anti-riot police personnel to the district to ensure peace in the region.