Friday prayers: RAF in place to avert flare-up | india | Hindustan Times
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Friday prayers: RAF in place to avert flare-up

THE RAPID Action Force (RAF) has been deployed in all the sensitive pockets of the district as law-enforcers fear that the Tuesday?s communal flare-up may have some repercussions during Friday prayers.

india Updated: Sep 08, 2006 00:17 IST

THE RAPID Action Force (RAF) has been deployed in all the sensitive pockets of the district  as law-enforcers fear that the Tuesday’s communal flare-up may have some repercussions during Friday prayers.

The reason for fearing such repercussion is the fact that the condition of one of the injured Meraj, who is undergoing treatment at the LLR Hospital, is stated to be critical. Meraj, who is the lone son of his family, is on life support and doctors said that he was yet to be out of danger. Further, rumours about his death have kept the situation on the  boil.

Today markets in Patkapur and adjoining areas were closed down twice in protest following rumours that  Meraj had died.

A report in a vernacular daily regarding the condition of meraj also added fuel to fire. Following the report some people created ruckus at the LLR Hospital. The police had a tough time in controlling the people.After the incident, security at the hospital was beefed up and even family members of patients were barred from entering the Intensive Care Unit (ICU) building.

Given the sensitivity of matter, the police today lodged a criminal case against seven persons whom Meraj’s father had charged with murderous assault on his son. At the same time, all the Muslim dominated pockets of the city have been put under massive security cover

The RAF was deployed at the sensitive Parade Crossing and Nai Sarak locality in addition to certain other localities.

Similarly, the Raipurwa, Chamangunj and Becongunj, which will have maximum concentration of namazis on Friday, were put on the highest degree of alert.The entire Patkapur stretch has been turned into a garrison of sorts with three magistrates, two Deputy SPs heading massive police contingent. In addition two platoons were also stationed and entry points of  Kursawan, Telegraph Road and Sangamlal Trisection were sealed. 

The officials are working overtime  to defuse the tension and avert a possible flare-up. They are holding talks with members of both the communities and appealed to maintain the peace.

On the other hand, the registration of case against owner of Anand Radios and six others with Pheelkhana police stirred some protest. But people by and large refrained from coming out on the  street due to the presence of police at the spot.

Circle officer Rakesh Jolly admitted though the rumours were playing heightening tension and the police had so far responded promptly to keep the situation under control.