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Were Hindus pushed to play music in front of mosque? Old video shows mob with pistols in front of a temple dancing to Islamic songs

Amongst the crowd, while one man can be seen brandishing a pistol, another is seen dancing to Islamic songs with a sickle in his hand.

On April 10, Hindu devotees came under attack by an Islamist mob while a Ram Navami procession passed through a lane adjacent to a mosque in Khargone in Madhya Pradesh. The Shobha Yatra had to be abandoned midway after Islamists indiscriminately pelted stones, and set several houses and vehicles ablaze. After the attack, many leading media houses alleged that the clash erupted after provocative slogans were raised and songs were played in Muslim areas and in front of mosques. Media outlets like The Cognate went further to term the incident as ‘anti-Muslim’ violence.

Amidst these allegations, an old video has surfaced wherein a mob is seen dancing to Islamic songs in front of a Hindu temple. Swati Goel Sharma of the Swarajya shared the video with the caption, “This is Khargone, where a Ram Navami procession has been stoned for playing music outside a mosque. This is happening right in front of a temple. Notice the man with a pistol in hand”.

In her subsequent Tweet, the journalist clarified that the video is likely from 2018.

As can be seen in the video, a huge mob is seen passing through a narrow lane that also houses a temple. The mob can be seen singing and dancing to Islamic songs being played on the loudspeakers mounted on a truck. In the crowd, while one man can be seen brandishing a pistol another is seen dancing to Islamic songs with a sickle in his hand. The procession makes its way through the narrow alley, where locals gather on the corners of the street to watch the celebration.

Going by the video, one can safely presume that the Islamic procession was passing through a Hindu-dominated area. One can see saffron flags displayed on balconies and rooftops of the houses adjacent to the temple. The shops are also named after Hindu Gods and Goddesses, as evidenced by one of the hoardings seen in the video, which reads “Maa Bhagwati Doodh Dairy.” Bhagwati is another name for Hindu Goddess Durga.

According to Swati Goel Sharma, the video is from Khargone, the same district in Madhya Pradesh, where on April 10, a Ram Navami procession had to be abandoned midway after it came under a volley of stones. Several vehicles were set on fire.

OpIndia reported how the cops had to resort to firing tear gas shells to bring the situation under control. During the orgy of violence, a total of 24 people were injured, including six police personnel. Even the Superintendent of Police (Khargone) Siddharth Chaudhary has sustained bullet injuries. Keeping in mind the volatile law and order situation, a curfew was imposed in the area. 

Media houses allege Hindus raised provocative slogans/songs that triggered the violence

Many media houses like The Indian Express, for example, reported that the clash broke out near Talab Chowk mosque when some people opposed the provocative songs being played during the procession. The Cognate went on to term the incident as “anti-Muslim violence”.

According to a report by The Hindu, when Sumer Singh Mujalda, Additional District Magistrate of Khargone was asked if the procession had the required police permission as allegations have been raised that provocative slogans were raised near the mosque, he said, “It is a traditional route for Ram Navami celebrations and the members had police permission. The procession was suspended for the past two years due to COVID-19. The situation is under control now.” Ten persons were injured in the violence.

Meanwhile, Congress held the state administration accountable for the incident of arson and stone-pelting carried out by an Islamist mob. Ravi Joshi, the Khargone MLA from the Congress was quoted by The Hindu as saying, “Khargone is a communally sensitive place. We had earlier also requested the administration to deploy an adequate police force, but the request was not heeded. It is police failure.” 

SP who sustained bullet injury narrates the mayhem unleashed during Khargone violence

Earlier in the day, OpIndia reported how SP Siddharth Chaudhary, who had sustained bullet injury during the Khargone stone-pelting incident, had described how things had unfolded and the predicaments faced by him his officers who were targeted by these radical elements.

The SP recalled how a miscreant wielding a sword had dashed toward the Hindus devotees. A police team of 12 to 15 officers attempted to apprehend the sword-wielding miscreant and were initially successful, but he soon managed to escape and flee. Then, as the SP attempted to catch up with him by running behind him, someone shot at his leg from behind. Chaudhary stated that at first, he thought someone had struck him with a stone. But one of his officers realised that the SP had been hit with a bullet. Despite suffering a head injury himself, the officer rushed the blood-soaked SP to the hospital.

According to Siddharth Chaudhary, the procession was slightly delayed because the main tableaux could not arrive at the scheduled time. By then it was time for the Muslims to offer Namaz. The situation deteriorated soon after that. He stated that the police were trying to move the tableaus forward, but some people from behind began throwing stones. Within no time some other miscreants barged the narrow lane and began setting vehicles and houses on fire. SP Siddharth Chaudhary recalled how, despite great difficulty, the policemen rescued the people trapped in the narrow lane.

The SP stated that even the fire vehicle was attacked by some arsonists and the narrow lanes in the area made it extremely difficult for the police to escort the vehicles.

Ayodhra Ram Mandir special coverage by OpIndia

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OpIndia Staff
OpIndia Staff
Staff reporter at OpIndia

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