Day be­fore clash, Ijtema got no­tice over huge crowd

The Times of India (New Delhi edition) - - POLITICS POLICY - San­[email protected]

Meerut: A day be­fore the De­cem­ber 3 vi­o­lence in Bu­land­shah over al­leged cow slaugh­ter, the lo­cal ad­min­is­tra­tion had is­sued no­tice to the or­gan­is­ers of Tab­lighi Ijtema, a three-day Is­lamic con­gre­ga­tion which be­gan on De­cem­ber 1, ask­ing them “how such a huge crowd was as­sem­bled when per­mis­sion was taken only for 2 lakh devo­tees”.

Ad­di­tional direc­tor gen­eral (Meerut zone), Prashant Ku­mar told TOI, “If some­thing had gone wrong, ri­ots of un­prece­dented scale would have oc­curred.” While news re­ports claimed over10 lakh devo­tees at­tended the Ijtema and the ADG (law and or­der) said the num­ber could be close to 15 lakh, the or­gan­is­ers said claims are ex­ag­ger­ated and the num­bers could be in the range of 3-4 lakh.

Speak­ing with TOI, Bu­land­shahr DM Anuj Ku­mar Jha said, “The per­mis­sion was granted only for 2 lakh peo­ple but the num­ber of devo­tees reached more than a mil­lion.”

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