Chhattisgarh: Abhishek Singh son of ex-CM Raman Singh booked for rioting along with BJP PM Santosh Pandey 

They also allegedly participated in a communal rally calling for violence against Muslims in Kawardha

Abhishek Singh son of ex-CM Raman Singh booked for rioting

Former Chhattisgarh Chief Minister Raman Singh’s son, Abhishek Singh, and Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) MP from Rajnandgaon, Santosh Pandey have been booked for rioting and damage to property in connection with the communal violence in Kawardha. Viral video clips of a rally in which Abhishek Singh and Santosh Pandey reportedly participated, as their supporters chanted communal slurs such as “Jab k***e kaate jayengey, Ram Ram chillaynge” meaning, “when Muslims are chopped up, they will scream Ram Ram.” K***e is a slur used for circumsiced Muslim men. 






As is the case with the politically powerful, when accused of inciting communal hate and violence, Pandey admitted to the media that he participated in the rally but was not in that mob which turned violent. He told Hindustan Times, “The charges against me are false… People in the rally got scattered and some miscreants entered the lanes where the violence took place.” Singh, the son of the former CM, has so far not made any comment to the media. 

However, they are being ‘defended’ strongly by colleagues. The HT reported that Dharamlal Kaushik, the opposition leader in the state assembly, said the case against the two BJP leaders reflects dictatorship and political vendetta and that they are innocent: “The two leaders who were booked actually tried to contain the tension. The administration and police are responsible for Tuesday’s violence and now they are trying to put blame on the BJP leaders.”

On Tuesday, a mob of nearly 3,000 people, reportedly led by Hindutva outfits, marched the streets of Kawardha town in Chhattisgarh’s Kabirdham district, wielding swords and lathis. The violent right-wing mob, one of the biggest reported in recent times, was allegedly attacking houses and vehicles of people from “another community” and pelting stones on police personnel. Social media revealed that the ‘other community’ under attack were Muslims. The area remained tense for “more than 48 hours following an altercation” between the two groups over “religious flags being allegedly brought down on Sunday”. 

Police superintendent Mohit Garg told the media, “Based on the initial investigation, we have booked both Pandey and Singh for rioting and damage of property along with other leaders of Hindu outfits”. However he added that “the First Information Report in the case has not been made public in view of the sensitivity of the matter.” Garg confirmed to the media that “both Pandey and Singh were present at a protest rally organised in the town which turned violent on Tuesday.”  

Around 95 people have so far been arrested for rioting and violence, which resulted in a dozen people including three policemen sustaining injuries. Congress leader Sushil Anand Shukla told the media that as Pandey and Singh led the mob and instigated violence in the peaceful town he believed that “both should be arrested.”



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