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Ram Navami violence: Bulldozers brought in to remove illegal encroachments in Gujarat’s Khambhat


Days after communal violence rocked Khambhat town of Gujarat‘s Anand district, the administration on Friday brought in bulldozers to remove illegal encroachments along a road in Shakarpura area of the town where a Ram Navami procession came under attack on April 10. Apart from the illegal encroachments, including wooden cabins and some concrete structures, the administration was also clearing bushes from the land in Shakarpura, as miscreants had used these to hide after throwing stones at the procession, Anand District Collector MY Daxini said.

“Miscreants had used the bushes and thick vegetation to attack the procession. Hence, we have launched a drive from today to clear bushes and illegal structures built on government land alongside a road in Shakarpura. This drive will continue in the coming days till the entire area is cleared,” Daxini said.

On March 10, clashes erupted between two communities in Khambhat after stones were pelted on a Ram Navami procession in Shakarpura.

Anand district superintendent of police Ajit Rajian had earlier said that communal violence in Khambhat town was a “pre-planned conspiracy” hatched by a “sleeper module” to achieve the dominance of the Muslim community in the town.

The police have already arrested 11 persons involved in the entire conspiracy.

The perpetrators had planned to attack the procession and spread violence to teach the members of Hindu community a lesson to not take out any such procession in the future, the police said.

As planned, some of the accused, including Maulvi Ayyub Malek and Vasim Malek, intentionally started arguments with organisers of the procession over the issue of music and asked them to turn it off when the procession reached Shakarpura.

When the police were busy trying to resolve the issue, other perpetrators, as directed by the main accused, suddenly started stone pelting from behind, the SP had said.

A senior citizen was killed and another injured in the violence that broke out after the procession was attacked on April 10. Similar clashes erupted in Himmatnagar town of Sabarkantha district on the same day.



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