Behata Gusai village in Uttar Pradesh’s Budaun witnessed communal tension on Wednesday after members belonging to a ‘particular community’ attacked a shobha yatra that was taken out to celebrate Janmashtami. This resulted in injuries to about a dozen people, including to policeman. A heavy police force has now been deployed in the area to stop the situation from worsening.
In late afternoon on Wednesday, the procession, which also contained street performers and tableaux of other Hindu gods and goddesses, was going around the village. Soon the people belonging to ‘another community’ opposed this procession and some of the elements started pelting stones on the procession. This resulted in a confrontation between the two communities, which worsened after shots were also fired in the air.
People including Naval Puri, Rahul Puri, Pramod Gupta, Ankit Sharma, Bhajan Lal Gupta and Dr Pradeep Puri were injured. This whole confrontation lasted for about 2 hours.
According to some media reports, this whole incident appeared pre-planned. Locals are also blaming the police’s lax attitude for the whole situation. The villagers reportedly inform the police about this procession every year and also demand sufficient police protection for the same as such attacks have taken place earlier too. Even after that, the local police station took the situation lightly and didn’t deploy personnel.
Local reports quote people claiming that the people from the ‘particular community’ had already created a plan and attacked the procession as soon as it reached ‘their area’. The people participating in the procession on the other hand had no clue and were caught unaware by the attackers. The attackers were reportedly so aggressive that they didn’t let anyone flee and injured anyone they could lay their hands on.
Just as the victims started to cry out for help, the police reached the spot half prepared and as a result they too were injured by the attackers. Reports also claim that the local police tried to hush the matter up in the fear of action against them by their superiors. Incidentally even the ASP of the district came to know about the incident only after the word of it spread in the region.
What raises further questions about the police is the fact that such attacks have also taken place in the previous years, and there were claims that the police could have easily prevented the whole incident.
Even though the mainstream media decided to label the attackers as belonging to a ‘particular community’, some people on social media claimed that the incident happened between Hindus and Muslims.