Uttar Pradesh on high alert sensing percolation of Maharashtra caste clash

An event called Bheem Gyan Charcha is to be organised in Khatauli area of Muzaffarnagar district in western UP on January 7 signs of Maharashtra caste unrest percolating to Uttar Pradesh.

Published: 04th January 2018 09:14 PM  |   Last Updated: 04th January 2018 09:14 PM   |  A+A-

Dalit protesters block a road during Maharashtra bandh called over Koregaon violence in Thane, Mumbai on Wednesday. (PTI)

Express News Service

LUCKNOW: State law and order machinery went into overdrive as the signs of Maharashtra caste unrest percolating to Uttar Pradesh emerged with announcement of an event called Bheem Gyan Charcha to be
organised in Khatauli area of Muzaffarnagar district in western UP on January 7.

The ramifications of Mumbai caste conflagration in UP don’t seem to be out of place as the intelligence wing of UP police has hinted at the likely presence of several dalit leaders from across the country at the event. The purpose of the meeting is to rake up dalit issues and highlight the alleged injustice and 
oppression the community was facing in the country.

The intelligence bureau report even mentions a few such outfits -- Ambedkar Kalyankari Samiti, Jai Sindhu Sangh, Bhim Yuva Sanghthan, and Lord Budha Sewa Santhan -- which have been actively sensitising the members of the dalit community in rural pockets of western UP districts like Muzaffarnagar, Saharanpur, Shamli, Bijnor and Meerut.

Even the members of Bhim Sena, the organisation which led a movement post-Saharanpur caste conflicts in April-May last year, may also join the Gyan Charcha. Even Saharanpur conflagration involving dalits and upper caste thakurs at Shabbirpur village of Saharanpur early this year is likely to come up during the ‘charcha’ at Muzaffarnagar.

Though Bhim Sena chief Chandrashekhar is still in jail, over three-dozen of his supporters are out on bail to take his mission forward and they may participate in Muzaffarnagar event.

On the basis of the intelligence reports, UP DGP headquarters on Thursday put the state on high alert. According to Additional Director General (Law and Order) Anand Kumar, while the police chiefs
were asked to keep a tight vigil on trouble makers in their respective districts, teams were set up to nab the anti-social elements who were apparently trying to vitiate the atmosphere by spreading caste-specific canards.

“Some incriminating videos have come to our notice and teams have been constituted to nab the culprits,” said ADG (L&O). The report also mentions the name of a sub-inspector Ravikant Ambedkar  posted in crime branch of Delhi police and DySP Rajiv Kumar Singh, posted in Muzaffarnagar, as the likely participants in the event.

Posted as circle officer of Khatauli, Rajeev Kumar Singh said, “I was invited to give prizes to some boys and hence I readily agreed. I was not aware about the agenda. Talks are on with organisers to
defer the date of the event and hold it after a few weeks.”

Meanwhile, among other disturbing posts being shared on social media, video of a youth Lokesh Katariya who is identified as founder of Bhim Yuva Sangathan, has alarmed police officers. Shot in some houses at Mansoorpur locality of Muzaffarnagar, Katariya is seen tearing down posters of some religious
figures. “Bow down only before photographs of Baba Saheb and Sant Ravidas,” Katariya
is heard telling an elderly woman while pulling down the posters from her house.

Besides posts aimed at deepening caste conflicts are also being widely shared.

The confidential report of Intelligence wing of UP police mentions some WhatsApp posts -- Ladai ka pehla siddhanth hai, apne dost-dushman ki pehchan karo. Kab tak dalit bane rahogey ab toh dabang bano. (The first principle of every battle is to identify both the friend and the foe. How long will you continue to be Dalit, it’s time to be fearless).

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