Muzaffarnagar remained largely peaceful amid five hours of curfew relaxation on Wednesday but its people were anxious about the fate of those still missing after the communal violence in the district even as a Baghpat village gave the authorities fresh cause for worry following the recovery of 41 cartridges of AK-47 rifles and an incident of brickbatting.
An unidentified man injured in communal clashes watches as he receives treatment at a district hospital in Muzaffarnagar, about 125 kilometers (78 miles) north of New Delhi. (AP Photo)
With no signs of the missing returning home yet, the administration has set up a helpline to trace them.
Inspector general of police (STF) Ashish Gupta said people may dial the police control room number 100 or 9454402574 to register a complaint about missing family members.
Nine persons, three of them critical, are still admitted in the district hospital in Muzaffarnagar.
In nearby Baghpat district, a police party was attacked when it had gone to Kirthal village to convene a peace meeting.
A head constable sustained severe head injuries.
Seven persons were arrested on charges of attacking police while raids are on to nab other suspected attackers. There were reports of more arrests later.
Besides the AK-47 cartridges, nine cartridges of a 9 mm pistol were also recovered on Wednesday.
“People pelted the approaching police party with stones,” said Luxmi Singh, SP Baghpat. village has notorious image therefore police had gone there to organise a peace meeting.
“An inquiry has been set up to investigate how the cartridges of banned firearms reached the villagers and what was the purpose of keeping them there,” said the SP.
Elswhere, the police carried out patrolling and deployed static force in villages where one community is in a minority.
Continuing its crackdown on troublemakers, the administration has taken preventive action against 1500 people, cancelled 2000 firearms and arrested 270 people till Wednesday.
Fearing arrest, several persons, including the leaders of political parties, have gone underground.
The police have launched a manhunt for those against whom FIRs have been lodged.