Despite being denied permission, Rahul Gandhi to visit violence-hit Saharanpur

Despite being denied permission, Rahul Gandhi to visit violence-hit Saharanpur”

Congress vice president Rahul Gandhi today set out to visit Saharanpur in western UP, which is tense after caste clashes earlier this week. I have denied permission to all political leaders interested in visiting Saharanpur. "It will be better for Rahul Gandhi choose to visit the place once the situation is cooled off and balanced", Prakash told ANI.

Rahul Gandhi who has been holding marathon meetings with Congress leaders and AICC office bearers including those from tribal communities had chose to visit Dalit families affected by clashes but the lack of permission by Uttar Pradesh police has come as an obstruction.

Twenty-five persons were arrested and four top officials suspended on Wednesday over the Saharanpur violence, a day after clashes between Dalits and Rajputs left one dead. Mr Mishra did not name Mr Gandhi, but said political leaders will have to wait for a few days before they can plan visits to Saharanpur, about 181 km from national capital Delhi.

Newly-appointed SSP of Saharanpur Babloo Kumar also said that in case the Congress leader still tried to come to Saharanpur, he would be prevented from doing so at the air strip itself.

Saharanpur has witnessed widespread caste-based clashes his month.

Police conducted a flag march in the Shabbirpur, Badgaon, Chandrapura and Maheshpur villages of violence-hit Saharanpur district of Uttar Pradesh on Friday, though no untoward incident has been reported, an official said.

Together with the violence in Saharanpur, these incidents have caused a further strain in the Bharatiya Janata Party's (BJP) relations with the Dalits, which suffered a major setback when a bright Dalit scholar, Rohith Vemula, committed suicide in Hyderabad central university in January a year ago following skirmishes between his group, the Ambedkar Students' Association, and the BJP's student wing, the Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad (ABVP).

Sources said that Yogi Adityanath had taken a grim view of the caste clashes and ordered the suspension of District Magistrate N.P. Singh, Senior Superintendent of Police Subhash Chandra Dubey, a Sub-Divisional Magistrate, and a police Circle Officer.

The first death took place on 5 May when 15 people were also injured.

The UP government further blamed Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) chief Mayawati's visit to Shabbirpur this week for stoking the violence.

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