Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Visnagar shuts down after Dipda Darwaza verdict

Visnagar in Mehsana district observed a total bandh on Tuesday, a day after a special SIT court awarded life imprisonment to 21 people upon their conviction for acts of attempt to murder and arson on February 28, 2002, at Dipda Darwaza, where 11 people belonging to a family of the minority community were later found killed.
    Tension gripped many parts of the district, including Visnagar, since Saturday in anticipation of the verdict by the court. However, after the verdict on Monday, people in Visnagar observed the bandh on their own . No group had given the call for the bandh nor anyone was prepared to give the reason as to why it was being observed, sources said.
    Vyapari Mahamandal president Kalubahi Patel claimed the bandh was spontaneous. Autorickshaws did not ply during the day even as chemist shops, too, kept their shutters down in the town, which wore a deserted look. “Tension was palpable in the town since Saturday two days ahead of the verdict,” said businessman Ishwarbhai Patel.“We had deployed adequate police force in the town ,” said superintendent of police, Mehsana , J R Mothalia.
    When asked about the impact of the bandh, he said about 90% of the shops and establishments in the town were closed.
    Yunus Mansuri (40), social worker and one of the witnesses in the case, said , “A majority of the areas where members of the minority community live like Kasba, Navavas, Ghatiya and Dipda Darwaza wore a deserted look. Shops in the minority areas were also closed.”