Maharashtra: Social Media Outrage Over Hindutva Mob Thrashing School Principal

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The principal was targeted reportedly by supporters of Bajrang Dal over allegations of holding Christian prayer in the school

Team Clarion

NEW DELHI — A viral video of a school principal being chased and thrashed by a Hindutva mob in Ambi village of Maharashtra’s Pune has received strong reactions on social media.

The video shows a mob chanting ‘Har Har Mahadev’ chasing the Principal of D.Y. Patil High School, Alexander Coates Reid, and thrashing him with his clothes ripped apart.

Efforts by Clarion India to get details of the incident from school officials did not elicit any positive response. An official even refused to share any information.

“No comment. The school authorities will release a statement on the incident,” he said.  

The principal was targeted on Tuesday reportedly by supporters of Bajrang Dal over allegations of holding Christian prayer in the school.

According to Police Inspector Ranjit Sawant of the Talegaon MIDC area, parents of a few students were also part of the mob assaulting the principal.  

“They also claimed that the students were asked to sing a Christian prayer every morning. It is a common prayer that starts with ‘Oh Lord’. The parents said it is a verse from the Bible. But there is nothing in the prayer that hints at conversion or anything from the Bible,” Rawat was quoted by Scroll as saying.

The police official said they were looking into the matter based on the application submitted by a parent. “The school has not registered a complaint,” he said. “We may take action against those who assaulted the principal.”

The incident has come in for a wide denunciation on social media.

Delhi University Professor Apoorvanand said such incidents must be stopped. He said that “the current government which promotes this thuggish act should be voted out.”

“It cannot go on. It should not. We need to vote out this government which protects and promotes this thuggish act by raising the slogan of Bajrang Bali,” he tweeted.

Imtiaz Jaleel, AIMIM MP from Maharashtra’s Aurangabad, urged Prime Minister Narendra Modi to speak up and take steps to stop such incidents.

“This is totally unacceptable. I have studied in a convent school and have great respect for the Christian community for their pivotal role in spreading education in our country,” he tweeted.

Journalist Rituparna Chatterjee called the attackers “terrorists”. 

“These illiterate terrorists are doing enormous harm to India,” she said.

https://twitter.com/MasalaBai/status/1676789391140814848

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