The situation remained tense and curfew continued in Sridoongargarh town of Bikaner on Sunday, a day after communal clashes left at least seven injured in the Rajasthan township. However, no fresh incidents of communal violence were reported.
The Rajasthan Armed Constabulary (RAC), Rapid Action Force (RAF) and Special Task Force (STF) remained deployed in the town, 60 km from Bikaner and conducted flag marches to maintain calm. Senior officials including range IG Giriraj Meena, divisional commissioner Subir Kumar, collector Poonam and SP Santosh Chalke were camping in the town. Internet and cable services remained suspended for the second day.
Minister incharge of Bikaner Rajkumar Rinwa arrived in Sridoongarh on Sunday and went to different places in the city with MLAs and police and administration officials. He later held talks with representatives of the Hindu and Muslim communities.
After the meeting, Rinwa said both sides agreed to ensure that there would be no further flare up. He said it was decided that the curfew would be relaxed for two hours between 9-11 am on Monday and a peace march would be carried out jointly by Hindus and Muslims.
Collector Poonam said the administration has carried out a survey of the property loss during the clashes. “A total of 48 people suffered losses and the estimate is `24.55 lakh. We have sent the estimate to the government and will soon pay the compensation.”
SP Chalke said the situation was under control. “Curfew remains imposed and there is no movement of people in the town. A total of 83 people have been arrested in connection with the clashes so far and 12 persons have been detained,” he said.
Trouble erupted on Friday night when a group of Muslims and Hindus had a confrontation at a shrine in Gusaisar, over playing of loud music. Clashes erupted between the two on Saturday in the Sabzi Mandi area with stone pelting and arson.
Police resorted to firing tear gas shells and lathi charge to disperse the groups.