Bharat Bandh: Were April 2 clashes planned to repeat Mandsaur-like violence in Madhya Pradesh? 

The April 2 clashes which claimed seven lives in Madhya Pradesh’s Gwalior-Chambal region was possibly pre-planned to repeat the violence witnessed last year in Mandsaur-Ratlam.

Published: 07th April 2018 03:39 AM  |   Last Updated: 07th April 2018 03:49 AM   |  A+A-

Dalit leaders staging a demonstration in front of Ambedkar statue in Bhimavaram as part of Bharat Bandh on Monday (Express Photo)

By Express News Service

BHOPAL: The April 2 clashes which claimed seven lives in Madhya Pradesh’s Gwalior-Chambal region was possibly pre-planned to repeat the violence witnessed last year in Mandsaur-Ratlam.

Ongoing investigations suggest a strong possibility of the mob indulging in violence to breach public peace and also provoke the police to use force (including firing), which would have made the entire violence turn into a kind of Mandsaur Part II, sources associated with investigations confided. Six farmers were killed in the Mandsaur police firing in June 2017. 

IG (Intelligence) Makarand Deouskar confirmed all police superintendents were alerted well in advance about the possibility of Bharat Bandh supporters and opponents provoking the police. Around 30-35 outfits were involved in fuelling the violence.

“The fact that 50-plus police personnel were injured in the violence in Gwalior-Chambal region speaks volumes about the magnitude of restraint exercised by the police,” said a source.

Not only were bandh supporters and rivals active over social media, some were even behind the distribution of rods and sticks as well as identification bands to guide attacks on the rival groups. Out of the seven people killed in the violence, only one died in police firing. The role of some local politicians in three districts is also under scanner.

If sources are to be believed, investigators are probing the possibility of some government officers and lower rung employees having been associated with the violence. “The April 2 violence seemed to have triggered sharp caste schisms not only among commoners, but even in lowest rung government staff,” said a police officer.

VDCs to safeguard statues in Madhya Pradesh
 Village Defence Committees (VDCs) in BJP-ruled Madhya Pradesh will be now safeguarding the statues of historical icons and personalities. The move comes in the wake of three incidents of Ambedkar statues being damaged over the last three days. The first incident was reported at Bharveli town in Balaghat district on Wednesday. The two other incidents were reported from violence-hit Mehgaon area of Bhind district in Gwalior-Chambal region and Amaugha locality in Civil Lines area of Satna district in the Vindhyan region on Friday morning, informed IG (Intelligence) Makarand Deouskar. In the Bharveli incident, the police arrested the culprits and booked them under Section 295 of IPC.


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