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Two youth were killed and seven injured at Akbarpur village in Rohtas on Tuesday in an incident sparked off by a message exchanged between friends from two different communities on WhatsApp.
The message allegedly had communal undertones and the offended community went on a rampage, attacking several shops, which set off panic in the area.
Soon after the offensive message’s sender was identified, Rohtas police station in-charge Mithilesh Kumar Jaiswal detained and relocated him away from the mob. However, rumours spread that the boy had been killed in police custody and the body been disposed of secretly.
His family, not finding him at the local police station, started accusing the police. Soon, a large crowd gathered and attacked a police party and torched its vehicle.
Immediately thereafter, the police station came under heavy brick batting and isolated gunfire from country-made weapons. Several officials, policemen and CRPF jawans sustained injuries. An SLR rifle of a SAP jawan was also snatched.
The police opened fire in which two persons are said to have died, while the condition of CRPF jawans Chetan Desai and KK Yadav, who sustained injuries, is said to be critical.
Sasaram BJP MP Chhedi Paswan told the HT on phone from Delhi that the SHO of Rohtas police station was responsible for the entire episode and demanded strict action against him.
The situation is under control and top police officials are camping at the site. Main towns of Sasaram, Dehri, Dinara, Bikramganj and other sensitive places in Rohtas district have been put on high alert.