In a strong attack on the Maharashtra government, Dalit leader Prakash Ambedkar on Friday said if it does not act against those guilty of the Pune violence, “no one will be able to stop Hafiz Saeeds from being born among the Hindus”.
“If you want to stop this, then act against those guilty of the violence,” he said at a rally of opposition parties called by the Akhil Bharatiya Mahatma Phule Samta Parishad here.
Ambedkar, who is the grandson of Indian Constitution’s architect B.R. Ambedkar and had called Wednesday’s Maharashtra shutdown against caste violence on January 1, accused the Maharashtra Police of tormenting the victims instead of acting against the perpetrators of the violence.
He alleged this was being done at the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh’s behest. Calling for a social democracy, he asked all deprived and backward sections to unite for securing their rights.
Expelled Janata Dal-United leader Sharad Yadav, who also attended the rally, said the condition of the country was alarming and urged the low caste to unitedly take on the fundamentalists.
“The question is aren’t low castes Hindu too? Why should Hindu fundamentalists attack them,” he asked, adding that when the regime supports the guilty, who can hold them accountable.
“That is why I say the situation in the country is alarming.”
Many other opposition leaders, including Congress state President Arun Yadav, were at the rally.
On January 1, violence erupted between two groups in Bhima-Koregaon of Pune during the 200th anniversary celebrations of the Anglo-Maratha War of 1818. A youth was killed in the riots.