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Anti-Dalit violence spreads further in Saharanpur, 2 dead in 24 hours

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Saharanpur: Violence in Saharanpur hasn’t shown any signs of subsiding. In the last 24 hours two people have lost their lives in Thakur vs Dalit violence.

Reports suggest that upper caste Hindu groups attacked a Dalit locality in Shabbirpur in Saharapur district of Uttar Pradesh. The district is around 100 kilometers from Delhi. The district has been simmering for weeks and many lives have lost over the period. A large number od dalits have been forced to leave their homes and seek refuge in other places.

Latest reports suggest that the fresh bout of violence was reported from Mirzapur village very early in the morning on Wednesday. It was case of mistaken identity. Thakurs attacked two persons sleeping in a brick kiln in Mirzapur with sharp-edged weapons thinking they were dalits. Nitin and Yashpal, both belonging to the Prajapati caste, sustained serious injuries. Nitin died on the way while Yashpal was admitted in a hospital in critical condition. Latest report indicates that UP Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath has suspended Saharanpur DM N. P Singh and SSP Subhash Chandra Dubey for their failure to control violence. SDM and deputy superintendent of police have also been suspended. Currently para-military forces are manning the area to maintain peace.

Reports indicate that attack took place at a time when senior officials were camping in Saharanpur and a heavy posse of police force was deployed in the adjoining villages. Confirming Nitin’s death on Wednesday morning, the SSP Subhash Chandra Dubey said that the Rapid Action Force (RAF) has been deployed in Mirzapur village to check any fall-out of the incident.

Violence against dalits has spiraled out of control. On Tuesday evening, a dalit was killed when caste Hindus ambushed a group returning home after meeting BSP Supremo Mayawati. So far about 20 people have been injured in fresh incidents of caste clashes in Shabbirpur since Tuesday morning. Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath had rushed the Home Secretary Mani Prasad, ADG Law and Order Aditya Mishra, IG STF Amitabh Yash and DIG Securities Vijay Bhushan to Saharanpur late on Tuesday night to bring the situation under control.

UP government, seeing the backlash from dalits has announced a compensation of Rs 15 lakhs to the family of Aayush, a dalit who was killed in the attack on Tuesday night. The administration has also sanctioned Rs 50,000 each to those injured in violence. Meanwhile, the District Magistrate N.P. Singh has appealed to residents of Shabbirpur to maintain peace and help the district administration restore normalcy in the area. Over 25 more people have been arrested so far in connection with fresh incidents of violence.

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