Hyderabad: HMDA official seeks action against Bajrang Dal members for attack on church

The Hyderabad Metropolitan Development Authority official filed a complaint on February 14, a day after the Dalit Christian church was attacked by a mob of 200 Bajrang Dal members from various dominant castes.
Hyderabad: HMDA official seeks action against Bajrang Dal members for attack on church
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Hyderabad Metropolitan Development Authority (HMDA) deputy engineer V Ravinder has sought action against Bajrang Dal members for allegedly threatening workers to lay a road on the compound of a Dalit Christian church at Janwada village in Telangana’s Chevella. He filed a police complaint on February 14, a day after the church was attacked by the Bajrang Dal members. 

The church was attacked due to a road widening dispute by a mob of 200 men belonging to Yadav, Mudiraj and dominant caste members of the Backward Class (BCs) caste linked to the Bajrang Dal, which is an Hindutva extremist group. The HMDA official also alleged that the original markings made by the officials were removed by the mob after he refused to comply with their requests to extend the road works towards the Church. 

The church was vandalised, and the crucifix was damaged by the mob chanting Jai Shri Ram slogans. 20 people who were in the church at the time of the attack were injured, including two children. Three of them have been hospitalised. The police have arrested 11 accused in connection with the case, so far.

Read Telangana: Mob chanting Jai Shri Ram attacks Dalit Christian church, several injured

Based on the FIR registered at Mokila Police station, Former Mandal Parishad Territorial Constituency (MPTC) member of Congress Party Talari Maisah and former village sarpanch’s husband Goudiicherla Narsimha from the Bharat Rashtra Samithi (BRS) had approached V Ravinder, who was responsible for the road widening works, to extend the road into the church compound.

“The Assistant Engineer made the markings for the 24-feet road widening work and left the place at around 6 pm. Later, I received a call from Goudicherla Narsimha who requested to extend the road up to the church wall. I denied but he did not listen. The given marking was removed, and extended the road up to the church wall by threatening the workers. They ignored the orders of higher officials and damaged the road,” the official said in his complaint. 

The police invoked section 3 under Prevention Of Damage To Public Property Act (PDPPA) and booked the accused under several sections under the Indian Penal Code (IPC). 

On a counter complaint filed by Goudicherla Narsimha, the police filed a case against five Dalit Christians and arrested them. He alleged that around 20 members of the Dalit community had illegally assembled, disrupted the road works and attacked him and others with stones causing injuries.

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