India: 4 killed in clashes over community rights

June 1, 2007 15:50


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Clashes between rival communities left four dead Friday in the western Indian state of Rajasthan, taking the death toll from days of violence in the region over demands for more affirmative measures from the government to 23, officials said. The clashes between Meena community and the Gujjars in Lalsot village of Dausa district came despite an order to police that they shoot protesters on sight, said Madhukar Gupta, the area's top government administrator. Four people died in the fighting, three of them Gujjars, Gupta said. The Gujjars have been staging violent protests since Tuesday, demanding their community's official classification at the bottom of India's complex social ladder, in order to receive government jobs and university spots reserved for such groups. The Meena community, which already enjoys the social benefits, are opposed to sharing them with the Gujjars.

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