As many as 45 people have been arrested till Wednesday in a clash between two communities which occurred in a village of Himmatnagar in Sabarkantha on October 18 over a land dispute.
According to police, the incident had occurred in Gadha village in Himmatnagar rural of Sabarkantha on Sunday when dozens of people from two communities clashed over a disputed land and cleaning of a road in the village. As many as five persons were injured in the clash. Later, two FIRs were lodged at Himmatnagar rural police station against 45 persons (30 accused named in the first one and 15 in the other). Police security was deployed in the village from Sunday to Wednesday evening in order to ensure law and order.
As per the two FIRs, the dispute first started on Sunday morning when a JCB machine was brought to clear the bushes alongside a road leading to the cremation ground in the Gadha village. After the cleaning of the road, the fencing work of cremation ground was initiated under panchayat fund. Soon, a group of persons belonging to one community objected to the fencing claiming that the village has been allotted a new cremation ground, said the police. “One group had objected to the fencing of the land and cleaning of road after which a police team has arrived in the village and taken the disputing parties to the police station. However a scuffle broke out in the village between two communities as the discussion was going on in the police station,” read the complaint against the rioters.
The main accused in the clashes have been identified as Aqil Bavan, Javed Bavan, Sohil Bavan, Saeed Bavan, Mustafa Bavan Ghanshyamsinh Zala, Himmatsinh Zala, Jayendrasinh Zala, Nirmalsinh Zala and Champaksinh Zala, all residents of Gadha village.
A total of 45 persons have been booked under Indian Penal Code sections 143 (unlawful assembly), 147 (rioting), 148 (rioting armed with deadly weapons), 149 (every member of unlawful assembly guilty of common offence), 323 (assault), 337 (causing hurt with negligent act), 427 (mischief) 504 (intentional insult) and 506 (criminal intimidation). By Tuesday, police had arrested a total of 30 persons in the case. A protest broke out in Himmatnagar by a section of people alleging bias on behalf of police.
“All 45 persons booked in this case have been arrested. We are investigating the case to identify if there are more accused,” said PD Chaudhary, incharge officer, Himmatnagar Rural police station.
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