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Protests continue against Jain monks’ deaths

    Surat/Palanpur (Gujarat), January 4, 2013: Protests against mowing down of two Jain monks near Bharuch on January 1 continued on Saturday with the community members taking out rallies in Surat and Palanpur.

    In Surat around 10,000 Jains from different sects gathered and carried out a silent rally on Athwalines Road, condemning the deaths of two Jain monks on Bharuch Highway. The rally started from Sargam Shopping Centre and ended at the district collectorate.

    All the participants were in white clothes and were carrying banners condemning the deaths. The participants demanded a proper investigation by a special agency into the deaths and sought an assurance to prevent such incidents in future.

    On Tuesday, Shree Gyanshekhar Vijay Maharaj and Shree Hastigiri Maharaj were mowed down by a truck on National Highway 8 between Bharuch and Nabipur. Senior Jain monks alleged that it was murder and had been crushed as part of a conspiracy.

    “It was a silent rally and we made our point in a very polite manner. We were assured by the district collector that the issue will be taken up at the higher level and necessary steps will be taken,” a textile businessman Piyush Jain said.

    The state government has ordered an inquiry into the incident and CID has been ordered to probe the deaths. “The issue was represented before the government and a meeting between leaders of Jain community and chief minister Narendra Modi will take place in short time,” BJP MLA from Majura constituency Harsh Sanghvi, who led the protest march, said.

    In Palanpur, members of Samast Jain Samaj led by monks took out a protest rally against increasing number of Jain monks being killed in road accidents. In a memorandum addressed to Modi, they sought that steps be taken to provide adequate security to monks who undertake journeys on foot. -News Courtesy: Times of India

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