A Bharatiya Janata Party worker, booked for his involvement in the Ram Navami communal clashes in Bihar’s Aurangabad on March 25 and March 26, escaped from police custody on Thursday.
Anil Singh, a BJP worker also associated with an organisation called Hindu Sewa Samiti, escaped from the police when he was brought to a local court, The Indian Express reported. “Singh was taken to court to be produced in a case against him when he managed to flee,” Aurangabad Superintendent of Police Satya Prakash told the daily. “Action is being taken against the negligent policemen.” Singh has served at least seven years in jail before. He joined the BJP in 2007.
On Sunday, rioters set on fire 50 shops near the Jama Masjid in the Aurangabad district. More than 60 people were injured in the stone-pelting that ensued. Several people had also allegedly thrown stones at a Ram Navami procession in Nawadih. Following the communal clashes, authorities in Bihar’s Aurangabad imposed a curfew.
So far, at least 180 rioters have been arrested and raids are on to arrest more, Prakash told The Times of India. Apart from Singh, Aurangabad BJP spokesperson Ujjwal Kumar and ABVP leader Deepak Kumar have also been named in an FIR for rioting, according to The Indian Express.
Similar violence was reported in parts of West Bengal on Sunday during the Ram Navami celebrations. One person was reported killed in these clashes.
While the Ministry of Home Affairs asked the West Bengal government for details of the incidents, the prevailing tension in the state and the action taken against those involved, it has not asked the Bihar government for any such report. The BJP is in alliance with Chief Minister Nitish Kumar’s Janata Dal (United) in the state.