April 6, 2017 4:00:00 am
Sheopur town of Madhya Pradesh is simmering since Sunday evening when a group of Muslims objected to a new RSS shakha in Gandhinagar locality and allegedly beat up more than 10 activists of the outfit. Police have so far arrested 10 Muslims in connection with the incident. One minor accused has been released on bail. In all, 76 Muslims, 60 of them unidentified, have been booked in four FIRs lodged in connection with the incident.
The RSS activists alleged that the Muslims did not want the shakha near a mosque. They also accused members of the community of raising anti-India and pro-Pakistan slogans and uprooting the saffron flag of RSS.
The activists alleged that they were stoned when they reached the police station late on Sunday night to lodge a complaint against the accused. On Monday, members of the Hindu community submitted a memorandum to the district administration and demanded immediate arrest of those named in the FIRs.
The next day, members of the Muslim community submitted a memorandum to the authorities, alleging that the community was being targeted and accused of offences it did not commit. The memorandum alleged that a group of right-wing Hindu activists had hurled stones at the mosque before they gathered for the shakha. Members of the community also said that they lodged two FIRs about separate attacks on Muslims, but the police have not acted on them. The memorandum further said that members of Muslim community wanted to take to the streets on Wednesday, but decided against it in view of the Ram Navami procession.
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Sheopur SP Saket Pandey said the situation is “peaceful” and added that the police were probing charges levelled in the memorandum submitted by members of the minority community.
A senior police officer said the land on which the shakha was being held belongs to the local municipal body.
Congress MLA Ramniwas Rawat claimed that the shakha was never held on the ground before last few days. He said the RSS activists Sunday gathered at a ground near the mosque and started raising slogans. When Muslims objected that the raising of slogans was disrupting their prayers, a scuffle broke out, Rawat said.
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