Arrest warrants were issued on Wednesday against 16 political leaders for inciting the recent communal violence in Muzaffarnagar and surrounding areas in Uttar Pradesh in which 47 people were killed.
The 16 include one MP and two MLAs of the Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) and two legislators of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP).
The warrants were issued almost a week after registering FIRs against them.
Ten police teams have been dispatched to arrest political and community leaders against whom non-bailable warrants were issued by the chief judicial magistrate of Muzaffarnagar.
The politicians facing arrest include BSP member of Parliament from Muzaffarnagar Kadir Rana, BJP legislators Sangeet Som and Bhartendu Singh. BSP legislators Noor Saleem and Maulana Jameel, Congress leader Saeeduzaman and Bhartiya Kisan Union chief Naresh Tikait are also in
They have been charged with violating prohibitory orders and provoking communal tension by making inflammatory speeches at different meetings in the district, which fanned communal tensions.
Meanwhile, in an embarrassment to the ruling Samajwadi Party, two news channels telecast sting operations which purportedly showed Uttar Pradesh policemen claiming that state minister Azam Khan had asked them to go slow in taking action against the Muzaffarnagar rioters.
Khan said he had nothing to hide in the matter and claimed that words were “put in the mouth” of the policemen by those who carried out the sting operation.
The Uttar Pradesh police have ordered an inquiry into the sting operation and suspended nine policemen for dereliction of duty.
The Uttar Pradesh Assembly witnessed high drama as the accused MLAs were seen attending the ongoing session. Uma Bharti led the BJP legislators and workers to the assembly premises and raised slogans against the government.
She dared the state government to arrest the party MLAs against whom the warrants were issued.