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After Boy Tears Poster of Ambedkar, Clashes Erupt Between Dalit and Upper Caste Groups in UP

The lack of grassroots assertion can be attributed to larger retreat of the Dalit-Bahujan movements. (Photo for representation)

The lack of grassroots assertion can be attributed to larger retreat of the Dalit-Bahujan movements. (Photo for representation)

The incident occurred while a 'Bhim Shobha Yatra' was being taken out by Dalit community members. About 25 people were injured and a house was set on fire during the conflict.

Lucknow: A clash erupted between members of Dalit and upper caste communities, after a minor tore a poster of BR Ambedkar in Mangta Village, Kanpur Dehat, on Thursday.

The incident occurred while a 'Bhim Shobha Yatra' was being taken out by Dalit community members. About 25 people were injured and a house was set on fire during the conflict. The police has registered a case against 11 people under various sections of the Indian Penal Code, and SC and SC (Atrocities) Act.

Dalit community members had started a ‘Bhim Katha’ on February 8 at the Gautam Buddha Park, located on the outskirts of Mangta Village.

After the Katha (recitation) was completed, members began their Yatra (procession). However, after a minor belonging to the upper caste tore a poster of BR Ambedkar, both sides began to pelt stones at each other.

Senior police officials including SP Kanpur Dehat Anurag Vatsa arrived with additional forces to calm the situation. The injured have been admitted to Ursula Horsman Memorial Hospital in Kanpur.

“Extra force has been deployed on the spot and stringent action will be taken against the culprits. Villagers are asked not to believe in any rumours while the investigation is on,” said Vatsa.

Meanwhile, Samajwadi Party Chief and former Chief Minister of the state Akhilesh Yadav blamed Bharatiya Janata Party workers for the attack on Dalits. He said that SP stood firmly with the Dalit community.

“Around 23 Dalits have been injured in the attack by BJP workers, this is a shameful act and an example of goonism(sic) by BJP workers. The police in the state is now being pressurised to work against their responsibility. We are with Dalits in this fight,” Yadav tweeted.