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Family assaulted, abused over bursting fireworks in Gurugram

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A fight over bursting firecrackers in a neighbourhood in Sohna in Gurugram district on Monday night led to five members of one family being attacked with swords, and three members of another family being beaten with sticks in retaliation, police officers aware of the case said.

Police said an argument broke out on Monday night when four children from Babu Ram’s family were bursting crackers outside their home, and members of Rattan Singh’s family objected to it. (Representational image)

The case also appeared to have caste undertones as the family which was attacked with swords belonged to a Scheduled Caste community and alleged that racial slurs were hurled at them during the attack, which continued inside a ward of the Sohna sub-divisional hospital while the injured were being treated.

A first information report (FIR) under Indian Penal Code (IPC) sections pertaining to rioting, unlawful assembly, and criminal intimidation, as well as under relevant sections of the Scheduled Caste and Scheduled Tribe (Prevention of Atrocities) Act, was filed at the City Sohna police station on Tuesday, police said.

The FIR has been filed against a dozen suspects but no one has been arrested so far. “They are absconding,” said Siddhant Jain, deputy commissioner of police (south). The swords, too, have not been seized yet.

Police said an argument broke out on Monday night when four children from Babu Ram’s family were bursting crackers outside their home, and members of Rattan Singh’s family objected to it. As the argument escalated, members of Singh’s family allegedly pulled out swords and attacked Ram’s family.

So-called “green crackers” are allowed in Gurugram.

“Babu Ram has alleged in his complaint that Singh and his family hurled caste slurs at them and assaulted them, as they belong to a Scheduled Caste,” sub-inspector Rajbir, in-charge of the Fauwara police post, said. The officer added that some of the women in Singh’s family asked the children to burst crackers in a nearby park but they continued to burst them near the house, which led to an argument, followed by a scuffle.

Police said that five members of Ram’s family were injured, and three were transferred to Delhi’s Safdarjung hospital. “Ram too was injured but was discharged soon after. The left wrist of Ram’s son Gaurav Kumar, 26, was partially severed,” said an investigator.

Police said that Singh and his son Kannauj Singh, 27, sustained head injuries while his brother Anil Singh (50) suffered a fractured limb. They were discharged after undergoing treatment at a private hospital in Gurugram.

Once the injured members of Ram’s family were at the government hospital in Sohna, at least five members of Singh’s family, armed with swords and sticks, reached the location and assaulted the injured — leaving doctors, nursing staff, and other patients in shock, police said.

Following the incident inside the hospital, Dr Virender Yadav, chief medical officer of Gurugram, wrote to Gurugram police commissioner Vikas Kumar Arora asking for police personnel to be deployed in the premises for the safety of doctors and medical staff.

“I wrote to the CP on Tuesday about the incident. I have asked him to get a police post constructed there,” said Yadav.

DCP (south) Jain said, “We have CCTV footage of the suspects in the hospital but visuals are unclear.”

Naveen Sandhu, assistant commissioner of police (Sohna), visited the hospital on Wednesday to ensure temporary security arrangements.

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