A section of the community of the 19-year-old woman from the Hathras district in Uttar Pradesh who died after being allegedly attacked by members of a higher caste has said that it will not carry out any cleaning work in Agra as it protests against the death.
The Valmiki community held protests in Agra on Saturday raising slogans. The agitation turned violent when they clashed with the police and hurled stones at them. The police in riot gear brought the crowd under control by wielding lathis. A large number of police personnel has been deployed in the area as they try to keep the situation under control.
“The police is monitoring the situation. Our cyber teams are also checking social media for objectionable posts. I appeal to all people to maintain peace,” BR Pramod, Superintendent of Police, (City), Agra, told ANI.
Heaps of garbage and waste were found at many place in the city as members of the Valmiki community stayed away from clearing work.
There has been large-scale protests in Uttar Pradesh and Delhi after the death of the 19-year-old woman. She died at the Safdarjung Hospital on Tuesday. The outrage was triggered after the police cremated her body around 2.30 am on Wednesday after locking up her family members, including her parents.
The UP administration has not allowed journalists and opposition party leaders to visit the family after the incident. The village has been sealed with heavy police presence who have been stopping outsiders from visiting the area.
Congress leaders Rahul Gandhi and Priyanka Gandhi tried to visit Hathras on Thursday but were stopped by the police. A Congress delegation led by the two Gandhis is again planning to visit the place on Saturday (October 3). Ahead of the visit, Congress’ Uttar Pradesh president Ajay Kumar Lallu said he has been placed under “house arrest” by the UP police.
Hathras Joint Magistrate Prem Prakash Meena said on Saturday that only reporters will be allowed into the village and that all political leaders will be prevented from entering it.
The state government has suspended five police officials, including the Superintendent of Police, as it tries to control the damage in the aftermath of the death.
The Allahabad High Court, which has taken suo motu cognisance of the way the body was cremated, has asked senior state officials to appear before it on October 12 as it tries “to examine whether there has been gross violation of fundamental rights of the deceased victim and the family members of the victim; whether the state authorities have acted oppressively, high-handedly and illegally to violate such rights.”