Protesters seeking justice for the Ballabgarh college student, Nikita Tomar, who was murdered in broad daylight by a man named Touseef, blocked the Delhi-Agra highway on Sunday (1 November).
The protests turned violent as the police resorted to lathicharge. The incident took place "around the time a 'Mahapanchayat' was being held in nearby Dussehra grounds in Ballabhgarh."
Reportedly, western Uttar Pradesh, too, witnessed anger and the presence of Hindutva groups at a Mahapanchayat, attended by various social groups in solidarity with the Tomars.
They seek justice for Nikita, who was shot dead in Ballabhgarh by a Touseef, who had been coercing her to marry him and convert to Islam. Touseef, the main accused, and his associates were arrested in the case.
Reportedly, the Ballabgarh ‘Mahapanchayat’ held on 1 November decided to give Nikita Tomar “martyr” status.
A member of the 'Mahapanchayat' told the local press thus:
Leaders of the three organisations attended the Mahapanchayat, which also saw the presence of villagers from the region, amid heavy police presence.
They were demanding capital punishment for the killers.
In the Hapur mahapanchayat, hundreds of people from 60 villages — mostly Rajputs — attended the mahapanchayat. They demanded compensation for the victim’s family and a fast track court for the accused's trial.
The leaders seemed angry over the incident and linked it to alleged forced conversion.
The family of Nikita Tomar hails from Uttar Pradesh and lives in Haryana. The leaders have said that they would launch a movement if justice was denied to the victim's family.
Haryana Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar has said that the state government and the Centre are probing the case.
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