MUZAFFARNAGAR (UP): Muzaffarnagar district authorities are not in favour of withdrawing cases, mostly against political leaders, related to the 2013 riots in which more than 60 people were killed, official sources said on Friday.
The authorities, in response to two letters from the Uttar Pradesh department of justice, have advocated against the withdrawal of 10 such cases as the court has already taken cognisance against the accused after charge sheets were filed by the police and the special investigation team (SIT) probing the riots, the sources said.
Some of the cases were filed against Uttar Pradesh minister Suresh Rana, former Union minister Sanjiv Balyan, BJP MP Bhartendu Singh, BJP MLA Umesh Malik and party leader Sadhvi Prachi.
Earlier in the week, Muzaffarnagar MP Balyan met chief minister Yogi Adityanath, seeking the withdrawal of 402 cases registered largely against Hindus during the riots.
He was accompanied by members of the Muzaffarnagar and Shamli khap during the meeting with Adityanath, who was said to have assured the delegation that he will look into their demands.
The riots that took place in western Uttar Pradesh’s Muzaffarnagar in August and September 2013 displaced nearly 50,000 people and shattered the Jat-Muslim unity, altering the political dynamics of the region.
In the two letters to the Muzaffarnagar district magistrate, the department of justice had sought information on 13 points, including whether cases could be withdrawn in public interest.
The district authorities have opposed the proposal in the interest of justice, on the recommendation of the district prosecution department, the sources said.
The accused are facing charges under various sections of the Indian Penal Code for violating prohibitory orders, deterring public servants from discharging their duties and wrongful restraint. The accused had allegedly participated in a mahapanchayat and incited violence through their speeches in the last week of August 2013.