ibnlive » India

Jun 20, 2007 at 11:17am IST

Gujarat erupts over rape, murder

New Delhi: The rape and murder of two women of Koli community in Gujarat’s Junagarh is fast turning into a major political headache for the Narendra Modi government in an election year.

There was massive protest at the Navagram police station in Junagarh on Thursday with villagers alleging delay in the arrest of two rape and murder accused.

Such was the mob fury that Gujarat police had to resort to batons to control the crowd.

The victims were abducted from the Datar shrine in Junagadh on May 13 and protests erupted across Saurashtra since the incident.

A bandh was also observed in the region on Thursday. Gujarat Minister Purshottam Solanki had also resigned from the Modi team following outrage over the issue.

He was the only member of the powerful Koli community in the Gujarat ministry.

On Wednesday, Modi assured people that the guilty will be brought to book. He also asked opposition Congress to desist from politicising the issue.

"The state government will nab the culprits of the heinous crime as soon as possible and ensure that they get harsh punishment," Modi told a women's gathering at Porbandar.