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Rajasthan: Curfew in Hindaun City after houses of Dalit MLA, former minister set on fire; over 40 arrested

A day after one person died and many others were injured in Rajasthan in wake of the Bharat Bandh called by Scheduled Caste, Scheduled Tribe outfits, Hindaun City in Karauli district saw fresh violence on Tuesday.

According to the police, people from other castes who were miffed over Monday's protests, allegedly damaged property and set on fire the houses of two Dalit politicians in Hindaun City on Tuesday morning.

"Yesterday a crowd of around 15-20 thousand protesters who were in favour of the bandh had created ruckus in several areas such as Gangapur City in Sawai Madhopur and Hindaun City in Karauli. Today, traders, businessmen and non scheduled caste people took out a rally against yesterday's violence," Alok Kumar Vashishtha, inspector general of police, Bharatpur range told reporters on Tuesday.

He added that the crowd tried to attack a settlement of Dalits, particularly people from the Jatav community. "After yesterday's incident, there was a reaction from the business and market associations and people not belonging to SC/ST communities. Defying the orders of section 144 imposed in the area, they tried to go into Jatav settlement and the police had to intervene," said Vashishtha.

He added that the crowd set on fire the houses of incumbent MLA from Hindaun City Rajkumari Jatav and former minister Bharosi Lal Jatav.

"A crowd of around 3-4 thousand people attacked the houses of the MLA and former minister and the police were outnumbered. The houses were set on fire by the protesters and several police personnel were also injured. There haven't been instances of civilians being injured," said Vashishtha.

He added that so far around 45 people have been arrested for Tuesday's violence at Hindaun City while around 50 people have been held for protests that rocked the Bharatpur division on Monday.

"Curfew has been imposed in Hindaun City and internet services are also suspended in the district. We are identifying the miscreants and some of them have been already picked up. Extra police personnel have been deployed and at the moment the situation is under control," he said.

Bharosi Lal Jatav, former minister in the previous Congress government in Rajasthan, whose house was allegedly set on fire by the upper caste mob alleged that the police remained 'silent spectators' during the attack.

"On Monday, a few vehicles owned by our family were torched and today my house was set on fire. The police remained silent spectators. Fortunately I had left for Delhi in the morning and my family has gone to Mathura which is why we were saved. Miscreants who break the law have no caste," said Jatav.

The state had seen widespread violence in Monday in which Pawan Kumar (27) was killed in police firing in Alwar district apart from massive damage caused to public property as a result of the bandh.