On September 19, a group of local Muslims assaulted members of a Hindu family and their neighbours, wielding swords and sticks in protest against the loud sound system used during the Ganpati Arti celebration. Hindus commemorate Ganesh Chaturthi on this date, placing idols of Bhagwan Ganesh in various colonies and homes. In Gwalior, Madhya Pradesh, one of these pandals became the scene of a violent confrontation fueled by Islamic objections to the loud music.
As per the reports, the incident took place at a pandal located in the Prajapati colony of the Genda road which falls under the jurisdiction of Janakganj police station. Following the attack, one of the victims was severely injured and his family lodged a complaint against the perpetrators. The police have arrested three of the attackers, one is still absconding.
The accused men have been identified as Salman Khan, Chhotu Khan, Irfan Khan, Parvez Khan and others. The victims have been identified as Jitendra Yadav, his mother Urmila Devi, his children and their neighbours.
It has been reported that, after installing the idol of Bhagwan Ganesh, the local Hindus began the Ganesh Arti, and Jitendra was holding the ‘Puja Thal’. Soon after the arti started, the native Muslims objected to the loud sound system, when neglected they pelted stones at Hindus. Jitendra met an argument with Salman Khan and Chhotu after which they returned to their homes.
Sometime later they came out with more people and sharp weapons, they were equipped with swords, sticks and other weapons. This time they launched an attack on Jitendra and did not spare a single person who came in between. The injured people include women and children as well.
Urmila Devi has told the police that, Parvez attacked Jitendra with a sword as a result he had a deep cut on his forehead. As soon as she reached to stop them, Irfan attacked her with a stick, she sustained a wound on her hand. Then came the neighbour Jaswant Khatik, who was attacked by Chhotu with a sword and sustained injuries on his fingers. Shyam also came for rescue but he was also attacked. After the attack, the accused threatened the locals of dire consequences and left.
The colony where this attack took place is known for communal tensions, not a single festival of Hindus passes quietly in the area, according to some reports.
The spot where the scuffle broke out also has a school with a CCTV camera installed in it however, the police are yet to recover the footage of the attack. As of now, the police station in-charge Vipendra Singh Chouhan said that the accused have been booked under charges of attempt to murder and the teams are on the lookout for the absconding one.
A Bajrang Dal activist, Sachin Rajput told media that, he was informed that one of his volunteers was attacked in the Ganesh Pandal at around 9:30 pm on September 19. The Muslims came and stopped Hindus from playing the song, on refusing to stop the sound system, they attacked them. He demanded strict action against the perpetrators.
He added the activists are not satisfied with the police action. This is the state of Hindus in Bharat where they are not allowed to celebrate their festivals, Hindus never attack Taziya or other processions, still face such attacks for peacefully celebrating their festivals, he said.