TENSION BUILT up in the Mukeripura area of the City late on Saturday after members of two communities came face-to-face following a dispute.
There was heavy stone-pelting from both sides and petrol bombs were also hurled. Police had to fire tear-gas shells to control the mob and there are reports of attack on a couple in the Lodhipura area as a fallout of the dispute. Jawahar Marg, one of the busiest roads of the City, had to be closed to traffic due to the tension
According to reports, trouble started when around 30 to 40 members of the Muslim community came towards the Hanuman temple at Mukeripura from the mosque in the same area, allegedly brandishing swords and other weapons on the first day of Muharram that fell on Saturday. People apparently belonging to saffron-leaning outfits objected and there were heated exchanges.
The police were called in and there appeared to be some sort of a compromise. However, suddenly stone-pelting started from both sides and continued for over 20 minutes creating pandemonium in the area. The situation came to such a pass that police had to fire 22 rounds of teargas shells to control the situation.
The trouble later spread to the nearby Udapura and Bombay Bazaar areas and there were reports that a couple belonging to the minority community travelling in an auto rickshaw was injured in a sword attack at Silawatpura. The couple, Saira and Akhtar Baig, reside in Topkhana. Akhtar sustained injuries on his face and was admitted to MY Hospital. There were also reports that petrol bombs had been thrown at three houses in Mukeripura.
Collector Vivek Aggarwal, SP Anshuman Yadav and other senior police and administrative officials reached the spot to control the situation. The SP said that the situation was tense but under control. He said they had requisitioned additional forces to ensure peace in the City.
He said police first got a complaint that members of the minority community were trying to enter a Hindu house. They reached the spot, but found no one there.
Saffron-leaning activists then staged a chakka jam in the area and some stones were thrown at them. Soon there was heavy stone-pelting from both sides and police had to resort to lathi charge and firing teargas to control the situation.