Saharanpur violence was orchestrated for monetary gain, say cops

Saharanpur violence was orchestrated for monetary gain, say cops

The communal violence in Saharanpur may have been engineered for a few lakh rupees, according to the “startling revelations” made by former corporater Moharram Ali alias Pappu, said police sources.

Ali, who was arrested on Thursday, had demanded Rs 25 lakh from members of a community to allow them to construct the wall on the disputed land, which was situated near a Gurudwara. Sources also said that Ali had been paid Rs 10 lakh and the rest was to be paid later, they added. Officials said Ali suspected that the other community might not pay the rest of the amount and hatched a plan to create communal tension.

Though the other community reportedly had a favourable court order in this regard, Ali was creating hurdles and demanded money to settle the matter, said police officers who interrogated Ali. They said that Ali, his nephew and some others had amassed cans filled with inflammable chemicals and other weapons for the purpose of using them during the clashes.

Officials revealed that Ali and his goons had hidden the chemicals at Qutubsher area. The rioters had planned to trigger violence early in the morning during the time of prayers.

According to officials, the rioters used the chemicals in burning the shops and houses during the violence.

Ali and seven others were arrested late on Wednesday night by the police and were charged with rioting, destroying public property and inciting communal passion.

Ali had later led an attack on Qutubsher police station during which Sansarpal Malik, a constable, was shot at and seriously wounded. Malik is now battling for his life at the hospital. Police have invoked NSA against Ali and some others. As many as 87 cases have been registered against Ali and his goons at different police stations in Saharanpur.

Ali had been associated with the Congress, the BSP and Samajwadi Party in the past. He also has a criminal history. Meanwhile, the situation in Saharanpur was limping back to normalcy leading to relaxation in the curfew for eight hours on Friday.

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