The Chhattisgarh Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) unit on Saturday demanded a judicial probe into the Jashpur incident in which one person was killed and more than 15 others were seriously injured as a speeding car ploughed into people proceeding to immerse a Durga idol.
Chhattisgarh BJP President Vishnu Dev Sai, along with local party leaders, met families of the deceased and the injured.
During the meeting, Sai alleged that the Congress government in the state has given a free hand to drug peddlers.
"I would directly blame the Congress government for this horrific incident. We used to see such incidents in movies only but it happened in reality in Jashpur district. 'Shanti Samiti' (peace committee) had held a meeting before the people gathered for Durga idol immersion. What is more surprising is that there was no deployment of police personnel despite the committee having informed the district police. Had the police barricades set up there, such an incident would not have occurred," Said told reporters.
Meanwhile, he also blamed district police and demanded suspension of Jashpur Superintendent of Police (SP). Sai said that there seems to be a "planned conspiracy" behind the incident.
"The way the incident occurred and a car which ploughed into a crowd was set on fire indicates that the government wants to hide something. It has been learnt that the car was loaded with a huge amount of ganja, which is why it burnt immediately. A judicial inquiry must be ordered."
On the other hand, Jashpur District Collector Ritesh Kumar Agrawal told the media that the state government has announced a compensation of Rs 50 lakhs for the deceased person.
"One person died on spot while 16 were injured, four of them critically and they have been admitted in Raigarh district hospital for treatment. Those who have received minor injuries are being treated at Jashpur district hospital. A team of senior officials has been set up for further inquiry into the matter."
On Friday, the immersion procession had set out from Pathalgaon at around 1.30 p.m. when the SUV, being driven at a speed of 100-120 km per hour, crashed into it, throwing people around "like footballs" and crushing others, including the victim Gaurav Agarwal, 21, who died on the spot.
While the reckless driver was caught by the people and thrashed, the other two people in the car - Radheshyam Vishwakarma, 21, and Shishupal Shahu, both from Madhya Pradesh, have been arrested.