The Akhilesh Yadav government has prepared the ground to let off 40 men who had allegedly ransacked a police outpost,set ablaze vehicles and made a murderous attack on a senior IPS officer,leaving him so seriously injured that he had to undergo medical treatment for six months,during rioting at Mainather in Moradabad district on July 6 last year.
Last week,Moradabad police filed closure reports in three of the six criminal cases against five accused. In three other cases,where the police had submitted charge-sheets against 35 men,it has initiated the process of withdrawal of cases from courts.
In the attack,Ashok Kumar Singh,then SSP of Moradabad,had suffered eight fractures on his hands,shoulder and ribs,among other injuries. He was hospitalised for 10 days but underwent medical treatment for almost six months. The Mayawati government had dismissed seven policemen who were escorting Ashok Kumar but ran away when the officer was attacked. Ashok Kumar is presently on deputation with Sashastra Seema Bal in Delhi.
The arson and violence had taken place after an alleged incident of disrespect to the Quran. The police filed closure reports in three cases in Mainather police station on the ground that the accused had been mistakenly named. But they do not say who are the real accused. Syed Mansoon Abid,station officer of Mainather police station,confirmed that the closure reports has been submitted in courts.
Simultaneously,the state government has directed the Moradabad district administration to file an application for withdrawal of the three cases where the police had submitted charge-sheets. Moradabad district government counsel G K S Raghav said,The matter is under legal process,but we are yet to file the application in court. The rioting took place after the police went to the house of one Taslim in Asalatnagar village under Mainather police circle. They were accompanied by two sons of a fellow villager Kamru and wanted to question Taslims eldest son Muslim who,Kamru alleged,had molested his minor daughter.
When the police arrived,only Noorjahan,one of Taslms six children,was at home. Soon,the village was abuzz with a rumour that the policemen had shown disrespect to the Quran at the house. Agitated villagers blocked the Sambhal road. When the police tried to clear the road,the protesters threw stones. The PAC arrived to help the police,but they were also attacked and their vehicle set ablaze.
As the rioting spread,Ashok Kumar,along with other district officials,including then Moradabad District Magistrate Raj Shekhar,rushed to the spot. The DM and SSP were in the same vehicle. The vehicle was stopped at Dingarpur area where the protesters had burnt a police jeep.
While Ashok Kumar was busy trying to pacify the crowd,the DM and others left the place. Finding him alone,the protesters attacked Ashok Kumar and beat him.
Later,reinforcements arrived and dispersed the mob. Ashok Kumar was rushed to hospital.
After the incident,Samajwadi Party leaders Mulayam Singh Yadav and Azam Khan tried to visit Moradabad but were stopped by authorities. Moradabad Congress MP and former cricketer Mohammad Azharuddin was also detained at the circuit house in Moradabad and forced to leave the district.