Patidar protesters attacked a newly-built BJP office in Mehsana on Saturday during the funeral procession of a Patel youth who died Friday, four months after he was hit by a bullet amid the quota violence in August.
Mayur Patel had suffered a bullet injury in neck during a firing by the security forces in Mehsana on August 26.
During his funeral procession, the Patidar mob pelted stones at the BJP office and shattered its glass windowpanes, besides targeting a milk shop.
The last rites of Mayur were performed amid palpable tension and high police presence across the town. Around 5,000 people from the community led by quota stir leaders took out the funeral procession, which covered 2 km in two hours.
Police had been asked by the community leaders to stay away from the procession.
Police said the procession remained peaceful until it reached the BJP office. “Some anti-social elements tried to provoke the mob by pelting stones at BJP’s Mehsana district office. However, Patidar leaders intervened and brought situation under control,” said a police official.
Fearing fresh clashes during the procession, three companies of State Reserve Police (SRP) had been deployed in the city, while police personnel were asked to stay alert.
Mayur died at a private hospital in Ahmedabad on Friday after battling for life for 122 days. On August 26, he was part of a mob in Mehsana protesting the brief detention of Patidar Anamat Andolan Samiti leader Hardik Patel on August 25 following a massive rally in Ahmedabad.
As the protest turned violent, the security forces had to open fire in a bid to disperse the mob and a bullet hit Mayur’s neck.
Senior lawyer B M Mangukia, who is also head of Congress legal cell, said “There was anger against police officials and that is why police were asked not to patrol near the procession. The parents and relatives of the victims are thinking of lodging a complaint against police.”