As Dalit defiance poured out in the Bharat bandh across north India, tensions eclipsed three towns in Uttar Pradesh on 6 April. The murder of a BSP leader in Meerut and desecration of Dr Ambedkar’s statue in Ferozabad and Etah were reportedly the reasons for violence in those areas, Daily Pioneer reported.Suspecting BSP Leader Gopi Pariya of collusion during the protests in the Shobhapur hamlet, mobs rounded up the Dalit leader on 5 April. Reportedly, a list titled “Dalit vandals and arsonists from Shobhapur” began circulating on social media in the village located on the Meerut bypass road. Pariya, whose name was first on the list of 83, was shot dead, Indian Express reported.Dalits in Rajasthan Town Want to Embrace Islam After Bharat BandhDalit Arsonists’ List Initially a Police List: Victims’ KinAn FIR was lodged based on a complaint filed by Gopi’s father, Tarachand, a BSP leader. The FIR identified the accused as Shobhapur residents, Manoj Gujjar, Ashish Gujjar, Kapil Rana and Giridhari, who were charged for murder, criminal intimidation, breaching of peace, and under sections of sections of the SC/ST Act, the Express report added.Two of the accused, Manoj, who is Gopi’s neighbour, and Kapil, were arrested, the police told Express.Gopi was first shot in the chest by Manoj, and then Kapil and Ashish opened fire. One bullet hit his chest, three hit his back, and a fifth hit his hand. Prashant, Victim’s Brother to Indian ExpressPrashant, 24, Gopi’s brother said that they initially believed it was a police list, but that the police had denied it, saying that action is only taken on the basis of video footage, reported Indian Express. He said that they do not know who circulated it.Non-Dalit Criminals Sparked Bharat Bandh Violence: UP PolicePK Singh, Circle Officer, Daurala, under whose jurisdiction Shobhapur falls, confirmed to Indian Express that police had “not sent out any list”. SP (City) Maan Singh Chauhan told Indian Express that some residents of Shobhapur had alleged that Gopi was among the arsonists. “We are verifying the allegations,” he said.History of Caste Tensions in ShobhapurBefore succumbing to his injuries, Gopi had intimated his father of caste slurs and expletives hurled at him. “My son told me that they used caste slurs and said,‘Tu bada neta banta hai’’(you are trying to become a big leader), before shooting him,” claimed Gopi’s father to Indian Express.But this is not the first instance of violence perpetrated in Shobhapur in the name of caste. Residents told Indian Express that tensions between Dalits and other communities have been prevalent for the past three decades.“But it was never this bad,” claimed Prashant.Bharat Bandh: Man Seen Firing in Viral Footage Is a BJP WorkerElsewhere, Reports of Statues VandalisedAccording to the Daily Pioneer, the right hand of a statue of Dr Ambedkar installed in Bagichi in a Ferozabad village was desecrated near the Sirsaganj police station area on Thursday morning. Enraged locals demanded the arrest of the culprits, after which the police registered a case.In another similar case at Etah, the statue of Dr Ambedkar was vandalised in Shivsinghpur area on Wednesday night, the Daily Pioneer reported. The police followed up and lodged a case. With a spate of similar incidents reported from Siddharthnagar and Allahabad, Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath had directed District Magistrates and SPs to initiate steps to ensure the security of statues in their respective districts, the report added.(With inputs from Indian Express and Daily Pioneer) We'll get through this! Meanwhile, here's all you need to know about the Coronavirus outbreak to keep yourself safe, informed, and updated. The Quint is now available on Telegram & WhatsApp too, Click here to join.