MUZFFARNGAR — The MP/MLA court in Muzaffarnagar on Tuesday awarded two years’ imprisonment to 12 people, including BJP MLA from Khatauli Vikram Saini, after they were convicted of rioting and arson in a case linked to the 2013 Muzaffarnagar riots.
The MLA, however, received bail soon after the judgment was passed..
The riots had left at least 62 people dead and 50,000 displaced in the western Uttar Pradesh district.
The court had acquitted 15 other people charge-sheeted in the police investigation for lack of evidence. The court also slapped a fine of Rs 10,000 each on all accused.
Saini is sitting MLA from Khatauli assembly of Muzaffarnagar district.
He is two-time MLA from the same assembly seat since 2017. He was head of Kawal village when he was charged with attempt to murder and other charges relating to the 2013 Muzaffarnagar riots.
After the murder of two brothers, there were month-long clashes between two communities in Muzaffarnagar in August and September 2013.
The Muzaffarnagar riots were investigated by a Special Investigation Team (SIT) formed by the then State government lead by the Samajwadi Party.
Reacting to the bail granted to BJP MLA Saini, Akram Akhtar chaudhary, founder of the Kairana-based Afkar India Foundation, a non-governmental organisation that helped in the rehabilitation of people displaced in the riots, said, granting bail to him immediately after the conviction was unfair to those waiting for justice for so long.
Saini’s was the first high-profile conviction in the riots case, he said. (With inputs from media)
Photo: BJP MLA from Khatauli Vikram Saini. — IANS