Chhattisgarh man killed over argument on scenes of ‘Gadar’ movie, Durg observes bandh | Raipur News

RAIPUR: The murder of a Sikh trader, after an argument while watching the Bollywood blockbuster “Gadar” on mobile phone on September 15, has triggered a political controversy and led to a market shutdown in Durg-Bhilai twin cities for half a day on Monday.
The family of the victim, Malkeet Singh, has not yet performed his last rites, demanding justice. Five suspects, including a 17-year-old, have been arrested for beating him to death. The accused are from two different communities and they and the victim knew each other well, say police.
Chief minister Bhupesh Baghel said that it was an unfortunate incident and criticized the BJP for playing politics on the murder. The saffron camp supported the protests in Durg and Bhilai on Monday. In reaction, Baghel said that BJP is deliberately trying to give the incident a communal colour as it has no issues to raise.
According to police, Malkeet, 32, was in a group of people who were watching ‘Gadar’ together on an open ground in Khursipar, around 12km from Durg, on the night of September 15.
They were all drinking together while they watched the movie, police said.
Durg SP Shalabh Sinha told TOI: “There were two groups of men present on the ground. One group was watching ‘Gadar’ movie. Malkeet allegedly made an objectionable statement, which was communal in tone, which triggered the men in the other group to enter into a heated argument. The quarrel turned violent and five people beat Malkeet badly, leading to his death a few hours later.”
Malkeet was taken to a private hospital in Raipur, around 30km away, where he died the same night. The murder sparked a wave of anger in the Sikh community and among businessmen.
His last rites are yet to be performed as the community demands immediate action against the accused, a government job for his wife and compensation of Rs 20 lakh to the family.
The opposition BJP has extended support to the community and former minister Premprakash Pandey participated in the protest in front of a police station on Saturday. The Sikh community and business associations in Durg and Bhilai observed a bandh till Monday afternoon.
The bandh was supported by the BJP and Chamber of Commerce. Protests shall continue and the deceased will be cremated only after their demands are met, they said.
The district administration says that it offered a compensation of Rs 5 lakh to Malkeet’s kin and a contract job for a family member, but they are yet to accept it.

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