Communalism

Shops, Bus Torched in Fresh Violence in UP’s Kasganj

Clashes broke out on Friday after members of a right-wing organisation had an altercation with members of another community during a ‘Tiranga Yatra’ .

Police are deployed after two groups clashed on Republic Day in Uttar Pradesh’s Kasganj district January 26. Credit: IANS

Kasganj: Miscreants damaged at least three shops and torched a few other commercial establishments on the second day of violence in Uttar Pradesh’s Kasganj city on Saturday, police said, after a young boy was killed in clashes following pelting of stones on a motorcycle rally taken out to celebrate the Republic Day.

A bus was also set on fire in the latest flare-up in the city, where a curfew was imposed yesterday after the clashes.

A state government spokesperson said prohibitory orders still remain in effect in the city in western Uttar Pradesh, but did not specify whether the curfew had been lifted.

Fire brigade personnel were deployed to douse the fires.

A strong posse of RAF and PAC personnel have intensified vigil in the district, whose borders have been sealed to stop elements detrimental to peace from sneaking into the city.

The fresh violence happened a day after a 16-year-old boy was killed and two others were injured in clashes in the city.

The clashes on Friday happened after stones were reportedly pelted on the motorcycle rally taken out by Vishwa Hindu Parishad and Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad volunteers as part of celebrations on the 69th Republic Day.

The UP police said in a tweet on Saturday that they have arrested at least nine people in connection with the violence.

“Anti-social elements today tried to set on fire a small shop on the city’s outskirts… Some of the anti-social elements have been taken into custody, while others were chased away,” Additional DG (Law and Order) Anand Kumar said.

“Our main job at this point of time is to ensure that along with normal law and order situation, brotherhood among communities also remain intact,” Kumar told reporters.

He added the police was trying to make people “understand communal bonhomie”. “The situation is under control, and will remain so. Sufficient police personnel have been deployed.”

Superintendent of police, Kasganj, Sunil Kumar Singh, said: “Anti-social elements had set two shoe shops afire in Ghantaghar market, and fire brigade was pressed into action.

“Apart from this one utensil shop was set afire by anti- social elements. A bus was also damaged by anti-social element, who set it afire. Fire brigade was called to douse the flames.”

Deputy chief minister Keshav Prasad Maurya described the violence as unfortunate, and said the people behind it would not go unpunished.

The state police said that a complaint has been registered at the Kasganj police station and a special team has been formed to arrest others involved in the violence.

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