Batheti village in Jaunpur, where 10 Hindu houses were set on fire on Tuesday night. (Photo Courtesy: Indian Express)
In the police complaint, the Dalit families said that the fight began after the Muslim boys hurled casteist slurs at them
As many as 10 houses of Hindu Dalit families were set on fire by a violent Muslim mob at Batheti village in Jaunpur district of Uttar Pradesh on Tuesday night.
According to reports, a minor altercation between the children turned out to be a communal clash. The violent mob burned several domesticated animals alive. Samajwadi Party leader Javed Siddiqui and 36 others have been arrested in connection with the incident. UP Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath has ordered the authorities to invoke the stringent National Security Act against the perpetrators.
Following the incident, the district administration removed the Station House Officer of Sarai Khwaja Police Station, and deployed additional police force in the village. “On Tuesday evening, some Dalit and Muslim teenagers were grazing buffaloes and goats when they started quarrelling. Initially, the village head intervened, but later, some boys from the Muslim community returned to the Dalit Basti where a Dalit man slapped a Muslim boy, and the matter got escalated… There was stone-pelting from both sides and people alleged that firearms were used. Eleven boys from both the communities were injured in the stone-pelting. Later, a group of Muslim men indulged in arson and set fire to Dalit huts,” Mishra, the outgoing SHO, told The Indian Express.
In the police complaint, the Dalit families said that the fight began after the Muslim boys hurled casteist slurs at them . “When this was opposed, they started beating up my cousins… When some family members, including mothers of my cousins, went to inquire about the incident to the house of the accused, they had to face abuses… Around 6 pm, 57 identified and 20-25 unidentified people from the Muslim community came to our basti with sticks and weapons threatened to kill us… Women and children had to take shelter in the nearby village and 10 houses were burnt by the Muslims,” the Indian Express quoted the complainant as saying to the police.
All the accused have also been booked under section 7 of the CLA Act, Disaster Management Act, Epidemic Diseases Act and under the SC/ST (Prevention of Atrocities) Act.
The Chief Minister ordered the district administration to provide houses to the affected families under the CM Awas Yojana. “The families should also be given Rs 1 lakh as compensation,” a statement issued by the government said. The Chief Minister has extended a monetary help of Rs 10,26,450 to compensate the losses. He has also directed officials to provide help of Rs 1 lakh to the victim families through the social welfare department according to the norms. Additional SP (Rural) has been asked to probe the matter.