Dalits go on a rampage
Thursday, November 30, 2006 12:26:11 pm
Several parts of Mumbai have reported incidents of stone pelting this afternoon (November 30) in an apparent expression of Dalit anger over the alleged desecration of a statue of Dr Ambedkar in Kanpur, Uttar Pradesh.
Since morning, reports of violence in Dalit pockets started trickling in, from Thane district to Worli in central Mumbai and the Bandra stretch of the Western Express Highway.
Besides this, police resorted to lathicharge on protestors in places such as Kanjurmarg, Mulund, Kherwadi, Bhandup, Ghatkopar Chembur and Goregaon.
Deputy Chief Minister R R Patil said that though there had been “stray incidents of violence” reported from various parts of the city, the situation was rapidly coming under control. Patil added that police were receiving cooperation from dalit leaders as well, in this regard.
Maharashtra on the boil
Angry mob of around 6000 protestors reportedly set afire nine compartments of the Deccan Queen Express near Ulhasnagar however there were no immediate reports of any casualties. However, train services between Kalyan and Karjat have been halted.
Angry protestors also torched two local trains in Ulhasnagar and police had to resort to firing to control mobs. One person has been injured in the incident.
The local administration is considering imposing curfew in Ulhasnagar. Condemning the attacks on trains, Railway minister Lalu Prasad Yadav has said the culprits will not be spared.
Meanwhile, curfew has been imposed in Nanded district till Friday morning. Apart from Nanded, curfew has also been imposed in Pimpri.
Police are on the alert in Nashik, to prevent the situation from going out of hand. There were reports of protestors trying to damage a bus in Nasik and in Bhiwandi three buses were confirmed to have been damaged.
Dalits poured out on to the streets last night, in protest against the alleged desecration of a statue of Dr B R Ambedkar in Kanpur. In Nasik, a 23-yr old Dalit youth Rangnath Shankar Dhale was beaten to death by an angry mob last evening after they found him pelting stones at vehicles.
Compensation for Dhale
Meanwhile, Maharashtra government has announced a financial aid of Rs one lakh and government job to the next of
kin of Dhale.
Maharashtra PWD Minister Chhagan Bhujbal, who visited trouble-torn localities of Nashik and Vihitgaon this morning, paid a visit to Dhale's house at Muktidham and announced the financial assistance and job.
Bhujbal also assured free treatment to Dhale's ailing father. Three persons have been arrested in connection with his death.
Director General of Police P S Pasricha said among the 60 injured, 40 were policemen. A protestor died after he was run over by a truck in Nanded on Wednesday evening while trying to stop the traffic while one person was beaten to death by a mob in Nashik last night, Pasricha said.
Over 1,500 protestors have been arrested across the state for various incidents of stone-pelting and arson. Of them, 400 were caught indulging in violent acts.
Angry mobs torched 15 vehicles across the state and at least 100 buses have been damaged in the protests reported
from Latur, Bhiwandi, Mumbai, Pimpri, Chinchawad, Navi Mumbai, Thane, Buldhana, Nashik and Nanded among other areas, he said.
"Maintaining law and order situation is our top priority and the state intelligence department is probing into the
cause of protests," Pasricha said assuring that the situation will be brought under control by evening.
Keeping in view the law and order situation across Maharashtra, Mumbai police commissioner A N Roy has requested the government to declare holiday on Baba Ambedkar’s death anniversary on December 6.