Theweekendleader

BJP anti-Dalit, behind Koregaon riots: Delhi Minister

New Delhi

04-January-2018

Delhi Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes Minister Rajendra Pal Gautam on Thursday said the BJP and its leaders were behind the riots in Bhima-Koregaon of Pune.

Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) workers, led by the minister, also protested outside Maharashtra Sadan here and raised slogans against the BJP and its leaders.

The riots followed violence in Bhima-Koregaon of Pune on Monday during the 200th anniversary celebrations of the Anglo-Maratha War of 1818. 

Hundreds of thousands of Dalits had assembled at Sanaswadi village in Maharashtra when stone-pelting, allegedly by some rightwing groups carrying saffron flags, started.

In the ensuing violence, more than 30 vehicles were torched or damaged and a young man was killed. The violence then spread out to Mumbai and other parts of Maharashtra.

Speaking to reporters, the minister said that this was not the first time that the BJP and its workers were attacking Dalits and they had earlier attacked Dalits in Gujarat.

"This was done at the behest of the regional BJP-led government as they have an anti-Dalit mindset," Gautam said.

The minister urged the government to punish the guilty as soon as possible. - IANS