CBI files chargesheet in Pardhi eviction case

Jabalpur (MP): The CBI has filed chargesheet against two former MLAs and 80 others in connection with the 2007 Betul riots in which members of Pardhi nomadic community were allegedly evicted from the area by locals.

CBI has charged the then Samajawadi Party MLA from Multai, Sunilam, and the then Congress MLA from Mansod, Sukhdev Panse, along with 80 others under IPC sections related to arson, rioting, theft, trespass and demolition at Chauthia village in Betul district of Madhya Pradesh.

The CBI has registered the case on August 21, 2009 on the orders of the Madhya Pradesh High Court to investigate the incident of arson and demolition, which took place at Pardhidhana on September 11, 2007.

In its investigation, the CBI found that 11 families who migrated from Maharashtra in 1995-96, got land 'patta' by gram panchayat of Chauthia. These families also got houses Indira Awas Yojana.

A CBI spokesperson said the resentment of certain locals and another community against these families grew and a lady of Sandia village belonging to another caste was allegedly raped and murdered on September 9, 2007.

"After this incident both the communities became violent and compelled local administration to evict the families out of Pardhidhana on which the local administration assured that unauthorised inhabitants would be removed," she said.

According to the spokesperson, during demolition and arson, the MLAs from Masod and Multai reached the spot.

"They addressed the crowd and allegedly instigated the villagers. The crowd got further charged and again indulged in the act of arson. During incidents, some of members of unlawful assembly participated in rioting with deadly weapons," she said.