Saffron Flag Planted on Muslim Shrine in Madhya Pradesh’s Shajapur District; Police Register Case

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A screengrab shows baghwa flag planted at the shrine as police and demonstrators gather.

The incident comes at a time when the state is reporting cases of vandalism of mosques and destruction of Muslim properties by right-wing forces

Zafar Aafaq | Clarion India

NEW DELHI—Suspected Hindutva supporters on Thursday planted saffron flag on a Muslim shrine in Shajapur district of Madhya Pradesh. The shrine is located in the Sunera area close to highway NH-52.

A case has been registered against unidentified persons at the Sonera police station under section 295-A (Deliberate and malicious acts, intended to outrage reli­gious feelings of any class by insulting its religion or reli­gious beliefs). “We have started an investigation,” station in charge Sorav Sharma told Clarion India over the phone on Friday.

The incident comes at a time when multiple areas of the state have reported violent rallies by right-wing forces leading to vandalism of mosques and Muslim properties besides communal clashes.

When the locals in the area came to know about shrine desecration, they rushed to the spot and started a demonstration demanding legal action against the culprits. A police team arrived on the scene to pacify the people. The police assured the demonstrators that strict action will be taken against those involved.

Abdul Hafeez Sheikh, a local Muslim leader, said that planting saffron flags on the shrine was an attempt by the goons to disturb communal harmony in the area. “The incident has sparked anger in the Muslim community,” he said, adding that he appealed to the people to maintain peace.

Muslims and Hindus live together but some anti-social elements have tried to vitiate the peaceful atmosphere in the village, said Rajinder Singh Chokhatya, a local leader of Bahujan Samajwadi Party. “We appeal to the authorities to take strict action against such people,” Chokhatya said while demanding that authorities should restore the shrine to its original position.

The police have put out a video message promising that strict action will be taken against the “anti-social elements” who desecrated the shrine.

Station in charge Sharma said the situation in the area has returned to normalcy.

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