At least a dozen people were injured in a communal clash that lasted for nearly two hours in Meerut on Saturday. Three of the injured are reported to have suffered bullet injuries, and one is said to be critical.
According to reports, the violence started after a scuffle between Hindus and Muslims over putting up a fence around a well outside a mosque in Teergaraan area here. The clashes then spread to the nearby areas of Bazaza Bazar, Lala Bazar and Budhana gate. Both the groups are alleged to have fired at each other.
BJP corporator Vijay Anand, who was among the first to reach Teergaraan, was allegedly manhandled and his motorcycle was set on fire.
“I reached the place carrying a copy of the local court verdict which banned any construction around the well. The court held that it is a public property as a Jain temple is also located in the area. Nobody paid heed to me. They pushed me aside and set my bike ablaze while the police took no action,” alleged Anand.
Local BJP leaders uploaded photographs of the youth who is reported to be critically injured on Facebook and WhatsApp.
Party supporters, led by Meerut Mayor Ravikant Ahluwallia, staged protests in the affected area.
“The police did not react in time, as a result of which the clash escalated. The local police are operating at the behest of the ruling party as they remained soft towards members of the minority community who started the trouble,” alleged Ahluwallia.
Kiran Bedi tried to establish her credentials as a secular, pro-women candidate.