Kinnars arrested for assaulting videographer outside Mahakal temple

The accused who assaulted a local cable videographer created a row at Mahakal police station in Ujjain on Friday. | PHOTO PF

Ujjain (Madhya Pradesh): Kinnar community members (third sex or eunuchs) would forcefully collect money from devotees coming to the famous Shri Mahakaleshwar temple. Sitting a few steps from the Mahakal police station with an awning, these eunuchs would threaten those who don’t give money. It got so bad that the eunuchs threw stones at the videographer of a web portal who was doing his duty.

Until now, eunuchs used to dance and sing across the city to raise money from the public, but in recent years they have made temples their base. They would sit in groups outside each major temple and harass worshipers. Especially newlyweds remain their target. After the wedding they place a demand of Rs 21k in front of the couples who come to pay their respects at the temple and if they don’t give that ‘neg’ they start behaving indecently with them and often they strip naked while uttering a curse. Fearing bad luck, people get rid of it by depositing the desired amount. Outside the Mahakal temple, they made their way by putting up a canopy.

Journalist Shakeel Khan had gone to film the story of the ongoing construction works at the Shri Mahakaleshwar temple on Friday afternoon. He was returning after filming when suddenly the eunuchs attacked him from behind. Eunuchs who engaged in illegal extortion and those who made obscene videos in Mahakal Temple premises were also included among the attackers. Shivanya, Lavisha, Jotkul, Rani and two or three other eunuchs allegedly surrounded Shakeel and started beating him saying why he was shooting their video. Eyewitnesses said the assailants began abusing by clapping. They were doing illegal extortion. Even at the police station, they continued to create a row, witnesses said.

Shakeel Khan said the whole incident can be seen from the footage of CCTV cameras installed in the area. Shakeel Khan was hit in the head in this fight and Rs 12k was snatched from him. The police registered a case against the eunuchs under articles 341, 294, 323 and 506-34 of the CPI. After getting information about the incident, a large number of journalists went to Mahakal police station and demanded strict measures against the eunuchs.

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