Lucknow, June 3: A day after violence in Mathura left two police officers and 22 others killed, the ruling Samajwadi Party (SP) and the BJP on Friday engaged in a war of words over the incident.
While the ruling Samajwadi Party tried to downplay the violence, one of the most audacious in recent times in the state, and alleged that the protesters who fired on the police and killed the Mathura Superintendent of Police (City) and a station house officer were outsiders, Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) state president Keshav Maurya slammed Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav for the "lawlessness" and demanded he "reveal the reasons behind the violence".
Maurya sought an explanation from the state government on why and how the situation was allowed to simmer for about two years and then to spin out of control when encroachments were to be cleared by police in Jawaharbagh in Mathura.
"If you (CM) have the moral courage, expose the people who patronised the elements who led to this barbaric incident," Maurya said.
The chief minister has since ordered a probe and said in a tweet that the guilty will be brought to justice.
The opposition has alleged that Public Works Department Minister Shivpal Singh, the younger brother of Samajwadi Party chief Mulayam Singh Yadav, was patronising the Jai Gurudev organisation, an affiliate of which was behind the violence.
The BJP also demanded action against the Mathura district magistrate and the senior superintendent of police for what it said was "intelligence failure and shoddy planning" to clear the area of encroachments after court orders, leading to huge loss of lives.
The Samajwadi Party claimed that the encroachers were from Madhya Pradesh and other places and resorted to violence due to "unknown" reasons.