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R R Patil assures thorough probe in Bhiwandi violence

Written by: Staff

Mumbai, July 6 (UNI) The violence which errupted between locals and police in the neighbouring powerloom town of Bhiwandi yesterday, dominated the proceedings of the Maharashtra Legislative Assembly today with Shiv Sena-BJP accusing the government of being ''soft'' on the perpetrators of the violence with an eye on ''minority votes''.

Deputy Chief Minister R R Patil while replying to the debate on the motion, rejected the opposition charge and assured a thorough probe into the incident which left two constables and two locals dead and 34 police officials with severe injuries.

Mr Patil said representatives of Kabrastan committee and Raza Academy who are opposing construction of a police station in the town, met him yesterday. ''I told them to submit their proof of ownership within a week after which it will be scrutinised by the Principal Secretary (Revenue) and Chief Secretary. He also said that he had asked the Raza Academy and Kabrastan committee to submit their proof of ownership of the land on which a police station is being constructed within eight days.

Mr Patil said the representatives claimed that the disputed land belonged to the wakf board.

Mr Patil also assured compensation of Rs 7.5 lakh to the kin of the two constables who were killed. The constables were not in uniform and where riding a motorbike. Perhaps, the mob which was attacking a public transport vehicle knew the two policemen, he said.

''The police have identified the 25 to 30 persons who were involved in the ghastly crime and they would be arrested in two three days'', he informed.

He said the intelligence officers, who were present at the circuit house where Samajwadi Party MP Abu Asim Azmi addressed few groups, told him that he had not made any provocative statements.

''Azmi told the groups to maintain calm as it was only the poor in the minority community which suffers when violence errupts. He led the groups to the police commissioner D Shivanandan who assured them that innocent people will not be harrassed'', Mr Patil informed.

Mr Patil said Chief Minister Vilasrao Deshmukh had stayed proposal for construction of police station in the area when ''Bhimshakti'' organisation demanded so earlier. But when the police submitted adequate proof that the land belonged to the government, the Chief Minister lifted the stay.

They had even approached the court but lost the case as they failed to give evidence on their ownership. ''But,they say that they have got the required documents now. I have given permission to scrutinise the same'', he added.


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