It all started over half a dozen mangoes. Two neighbours who co-owned a mango tree in Uttar Pradesh's Varanasi, which coincidentally is also Prime Minister Narendra Modi's Lok Sabha constituency that won him the 2014 general elections with a record margin, had a disagreement over the division of the fruit.
According to a report in Hindustan Times, the kin of one of the neighbours, Ramji Yadav, allegedly plucked 24 mangoes, and gave only six to the other neighbour — Hakim Yadav. This led to an argument, and Hakim decided to notify the police of the matter.
The police's attempts to pacify the two neighbours were in vain, and the matter was escalated to the sub-divisional magistrate, who tried to mediate a compromise between the neighbours. When neither side agreed to relent — Ramji refused to part with any more mangoes, and Hakim wouldn't pick some of his own from the tree to equalise the share — the local police had to file a case against both of the men, "in apprehension of breach of peace", and both of them were arrested.
This is not the first time that an argument over mangoes has resulted in major tension and police action in UP. Last year, a young girl was burnt alive in Fatehpur district after two families accused each other of stealing mangoes, leading to arguments over several days. The girl had apparently plucked some mangoes from a farm that belonged to her murderers.
The previous year, in 2014, a man and his young son were shot dead in UP's Pratapgarh while two others from the family were injured when the teenaged boy plucked a mango from a tree that stood on disputed land.
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