TENSION PREVAILED in Moradabad city’s Nagphani area as members of the Muslim community took to the streets late Sunday to protest against a video circulated on social media platform WhatsApp, purportedly showing two youths being beaten up and forced to chant ‘Jai Shri Ram’.
Suspecting that the video was shot somewhere in the district, the mob marched to the Shahi Imam’s residence to seek instructions over the matter. Soon, senior district officials and police rushed to the spot to inform the mob that the video was shot in Gujarat’s Surat district earlier this month and the accused had already been arrested.
A case, however, a case was lodged at Nagphani police station against unidentified person on charges including promoting enmity between groups on a complaint filed by a local, Anas.
Earlier this month, tension had gripped Limbayat area of Surat, when a video showed a man abusing two young migrant workers from Bihar. The workers were seen being forced to vacate a rented quarter in Godadara by a man who identified himself as Amit Singh Rathore.
He was seen abusing them and forcing them to strip. The youths were also beaten up by Rathore and others. A migrant from Uttar Pradesh, Rathore was later arrested and booked for hurting religious sentiments.
Moradabad SSP Nitin Tiwari said: “When we inquired into the particular video, we came to know it was shot in Surat recently. Surat Police has already arrested one Amit Singh Rathore. The information was conveyed to the people here. Heavy police force, however, has been deployed in the area to keep a watch on situation.”
Nagphani police Station House Officer Sanjay Goel added that the video had gone viral in Moradabad over the last few days. “Locals suspected that the video was shot in Moradabad. They gathered at the main crossing and started a demonstration. They later decided to seek instructions from Shahi Imam Syed Masoom Ali Azad. A mob of over a hundred people marched towards the Imam’s residence,” he said.
“The mob returned after they were assured that an FIR will be lodged and that the video was shot in Surat,” said the SHO.