A day after a Dalit student succumbed to his injuries after he was beaten up by youths following an argument outside a restaurant in Allahabad, a group of youths, allegedly students of Allahabad University, on Monday staged violent protests in the city, torching a state roadways bus.
The protests came on a day when three persons were arrested for their alleged involvement in the murder. However, main accused Vijay Shankar Singh, who is a ticket examiner in Railways, is still on the run. Those arrested have bee identified as Mannu Chauhan, Gyan Prakash Awasthi and Ram Deen Maurya.
The incident came to light after some videos surfaced on social media. One such video, reportedly shot by a passerby, shows two people beating the youth with an iron rod and bricks, while some others are seen trying to stop them on Friday. Dileep Saroj (26) was a Dalit and a resident of Pratapgarh district.
Colonelganj police Station Officer (SO) Awadhesh Pratap Singh said that around 11.30 am on Monday, students from Allahabad University took out a march from Anand Bhawan to the SSP’s office, protesting against the murder of Saroj, a second-year student of Allahabad Degree College — which is affiliated to the university — and demanding financial help of Rs 50 lakh for the victim’s family.
“While police personnel walked with the students to prevent any law and order problems, another group of youths pelted stones at a bus passing by the Bank Road crossing around 2 pm… They damaged it and set it on fire. They had asked the passengers to deboard before targeting the bus,” Singh said.
Police rushed to the spot after coming to know of the incident, but the rioters had escaped by then, he added. “The students, who marched to the SSP office, were demanding immediate arrest of all the accused and strict action against them. They were also demanding a compensation of Rs 50 lakh for the family of the deceased. The SSP met the protesters and assured them that action will be taken in the matter,” the SO said.
Allahabad SSP Akash Kulhary said a case has been lodged against those who indulged in brickbatting and arson. When asked about the identity of the youths, he said: “We are yet to identify the youths who set the bus ablaze… we suspect that they were also students of Allahabad University.”