Violent protests in Barabanki after man protesting illegal sand mining killed

Barabanki: Violent clashes broke out between villagers and policemen in Uttar Pradesh's Barabanki after a villager was allegedly murdered for objecting to illegal sand mining.

Police opened fire on an angry mob that went on a rampage after the killing. Tear gas shells were also fired to control the crowds that burnt vehicles and attacked cops with stones for not arresting the accused.

In Barabanki's Deshrajpur village, farmer Ram Manorath Verma was allegedly killed by sand mining mafia Gomti Yadav, who is reported to have links with the ruling Samajwadi party.

Mr Verma had objected to illegally mined sand being dumped on his agricultural land. Gomti Yadav was mining sand for his brick kiln in the vicinity.

Mr Verma's father says his son was first attacked with sharp knives, beaten and then drowned in the Gomti River. He too was attacked and chased away by the accused.

Mr Verma's body is yet to be fished out and there are fears that it might have drifted away with the strong water currents.

The police have lodged a case of murder against Gomti Yadav and his men. However, they say it is too early to conclusively say that the victim was killed for protesting against sand mining. The police are also silent about the political identity of Gomti Yadav.

Meanwhile, there is heavy police presence in an around the village. Besides companies of the provincial armed constabulary, rapid action force personnel have also been deployed to maintain law and order. 
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