Dalit protest turns violent in the Capital

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first_imgA protest by Dalit organisations against the demolition of a Guru Ravidas temple in the Tughlakabad forest area turned violent in south-east Delhi’s Govindpuri on Wednesday evening, with the police detaining over 50 protesters, including Bhim Army chief Chandrashekhar Azad.DCP (South-East) Chinmoy Biswal said more people could be detained as several police teams were monitoring the situation following a clash between the protesters and the police.Thousands of protesters from various Dalit organisations, led by the Bhim Army chief, took to the streets on Wednesday and marched from Ramlila Maidan to the site where the Guru Ravidas temple was demolished earlier this month by the Delhi Development Authority.‘Attacked with stones’The police claimed the protesters turned violent and attacked officers with sticks and stones. “Mild and reasonable force had to be used to disperse the unruly mob. Some policemen have sustained injuries in the incident. Some members of the unruly mob have been detained. Appropriate legal action is being taken in this matter,” said Mr. Biswal, adding that over 800 policemen were deployed in the area. Sources said the protesters also vandalised a few vehicles and set them on fire. The road leading to the temple was blocked after the violence, the sources added.The protesters, however, claimed that the police started the lathi charge to stop their march. Satish Kumar, 43, a BSP worker from Najafgarh, said the police used force when some of the protesters tried to go inside the site of the demolished temple. “We were peaceful, but some people wanted to go inside the temple and the police used water canon and lathis to stop us.”Kailash Nirmal, 38, a member of Samyakk Buddhvihar, C-Block Mongolpuri, said they fled the spot as soon as the police started lathi charge and lobbed tear gas shells at them. “I am yet to find the others who came with me,” he said.last_img

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