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Rally by Maldharis turns violent in Gujarat; 73 detained

Press Trust of India  |  Mehsana (Guj) 

A protest march organised by members of the community turned violent in Gujarat's district today, prompting the police to lob teargas shells to control the situation, an said.

At least 73 people were detained, he said.

The march was organised by community leaders seeking 'justice' for Raju Rabari, a community member who was killed at in the district on July 25.

The traditional occupation of the community is cattle rearing.

Demanding arrest of the main culprits in the case, a large number of community members marched towards Nandasan, a communally sensitive village off the

from Rajpur, this morning.

On the way, some people started pelting stones at the police and blocked the busy highway, forcing the men in uniform to act, said of Police Manjita Vanzara.

"We lobbed some 15 teargas shells (to disperse the mob) and have detained 73 people for the violence," the said.

and its surrounding areas are on edge since the killing of Rabari with some Maldhari leaders claiming he was a 'gau rakshak' (cow protector) who was killed by people "involved in cow slaughtering".

While the police have arrested seven people, most of them from a minority community, for the killing, Maldhari leaders alleged the main culprits were still at large.

However, Vanzara maintained Rabari's death had nothing to do with cow protection.

"He and the accused (those allegedly involved in the killing) were running criminal gangs and facing many cases of loot and extortion. The murder was a result of a dispute over distribution of money," the said.

"The agitators wanted the police to arrest the sarpanch of (who belongs to a minority community) and some others who were not even present on the (crime) spot.

"We can not arrest someone without concrete evidence," Vanzara added.

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Fri, August 10 2018. 20:41 IST
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