Police official dragged and killed, Hindu woman burnt alive, eyewitness narrates horrifying details of 1980 Moradabad Riots

Police official dragged and killed, Hindu woman burnt alive, eyewitness narrates horrifying details of 1980 Moradabad Riots


On August 8, the Uttar Pradesh government-led by Yogi Adityanath tabled an inquiry report into the 1980 Moradabad riots that killed at least 83 people and left 112 others injured. The 496-page report on the 1980 Moradabad Riots submitted by a one-member commission of Allahabad High Court Judge MP Saxena in May 1983 delves into the root causes and their domino effect leading to the riots.

The report includes the testimony of numerous Muslims and Hindus as well as police officers present during the riots. The report mentions in detail the written testimony of as many as six Hindus who were present at the time of the riots and interestingly, each testimony suggests that the massacre was not spontaneous but a premeditated one.

Moradabad advocate Dayanand Gupta, one of the eyewitnesses, testified how during the violence that began on August 13, 1980, at the Eidgah in Moradabad the Muslim mob launched an unprovoked attack on the police officials and the members of the Valmiki Dalit community.

Recalling the bloodbath, the Hindu eyewitness said that on August 13 on the occasion of Eid, as many as 80000 Muslims had gathered to offer Namaz at the Eidgah. In disagreement with the widely concocted lie that the riots started because a pig was let loose among those performing namaz at the Eidgah in Moradabad, Gupta claimed that due to the large attendance, all of the Muslim participants were seated extremely close to one another and that there was no space for any animal to start wandering between them.

He added that after the Namaz, some Muslim attendees proceeded to the Congress’ Shivir (camp) and began gathering their stuff in order to depart as if they were aware of the violence that would shortly follow. When questioned, they claimed that a pig considered unclean by the community had wandered into the namaz. But when people pressed them further about how they discovered that an animal strayed into the Eidgah while they were engaged in offering the namaz, they ended up remaining quiet.

At this point, suddenly, some Muslims rushed out of the Eidgah and charged at B B Lal, a police official standing at the corner of the street and started hitting him, Gupta said, adding that the frenzied Muslim mob, further dragged and lynched Additional District Magistrate (ADM) DP Singh to death.

In the evening, the Muslim mob attacked the Galshaheed police chowki (outpost), setting it on fire, killing two policemen and looting the arms. Ten Hindus were brutally murdered in the Barwara village in Moradabad. A Hindu woman was burnt alive by a frenzied Muslim mob, Gupta testified, adding that while the Hindus were brutally massacred, every Muslim who was a part of the murderous mob made it out of the situation unharmed.

Excerpt from the 1980 Moradabad Riots inquiry report

According to Gupta, since the violent attacks took place simultaneously in different locations throughout Meerut, Bareilly, Rampur, Aligarh, Allahabad, and Delhi, it is obvious that it was a calculated attempt to incite communal unrest.

In his written statement, the Hindu advocate further asserted that Hindus were not the ones who initiated the violence in these places. Indeed, a sizable haul of illicit firearms and weapons was found in the homes of local Muslims, further establishing that it was Muslims who had wreaked havoc on the Eidgah on that fateful day on August 13, 1980.

Notably, in our earlier report, we mentioned how the report by Justice Saxena absolves the RSS, BJP, and Hindus of any wrongdoing and entirely blames the violence on the communal politics pursued by some Muslim political figures, particularly those associated with the Muslim League and Congress party, which was in power at both the state and national levels at the time of the riots.

Notably, Justice Saxena’s 496-page report on the 1980 Moradabad was submitted in May 1983, however, for so many years the report kept getting repositioned from one government department to the other. In the last 4 decades, the file has reportedly been suppressed at least 14 times on one pretext or the other. No subsequent governments released its content.

After Yogi Adityanath came to power in the state, his government decided to open the 43-year-old case. In May this year, the state cabinet decided to table the Justice M P Saxena Commission’s report in the assembly. On Tuesday, August 8, the Uttar Pradesh government tabled the inquiry report into the 1980 Moradabad riots in the UP Assembly.


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