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Sant Ravidas Temple Row: Locals Say Had Police Not Used Force, Unruly Protesters Would Have Caused Mass Casualties

Swarajya Staff

Aug 23, 2019, 09:42 AM | Updated 09:42 AM IST


Source: Twitter
Source: Twitter

The locals in Tughlaqabad, the site of the clash between police force and and the protesters demanding that the authorities rebuild Ravidas temple, said that the unruly mobs damaged properties and caused panic due to their violent actions.

On Wednesday (21 August) evening, clashes erupted between the protesters and the police. The police used lathi charge and tear gas to control the mob.

Next day, 96 persons including Bhim Army chief Chandrashekhar Azad were arrested on charges of rioting, unlawful assembly, voluntarily causing hurt to deter public servant from his duty among others and produced them before the court after which they were sent to 14 days police custody.

Recalling the clashes, locals said that had the police not resorted to use of force. mass casualties would have happened.

“Around 7 pm, the police asked us to shut the shops after they saw the crowd approaching Tughlakabad Extension barricade. We immediately pulled down the shutters. I had a few customers inside who had to wait for an hour before they could get out,” owner of a Bikaner Sweet shop in the area was quoted as saying by The Hindu.

He further added that the mob broke the CCTV camera outside his store and threw the counters outside my shop. He said that the protesters had picked up stones and bricks from a park nearby.

“There were thousands of protesters with lathis, swords and hockey sticks in their hands. Someone could have got hurt from the stone-pelting if the police had not intervened,” said Vinay Rohatgi, another local.

He further said that the panic-stricken locals entered his residence for safety.

“The police used tear gas shells to bring the situation under control. Else, the protesters would have probably set the street on fire and people would have been killed,” he added.


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