An Assistant Commissioner of Police and 20 policemen and were injured in stone-pelting at various places in the communally sensitive Bhiwandi town near Thane on Thursday following an objectionable Facebook post.
Four persons were arrested.
Tension prevailed in the powerloom town of Bhiwandi, which has a history of communal clashes, and in Rabodi area of Thane city early morning on Thursday, when the objectionable post related to a particular community came to light. Locals gathered at three police stations in Bhiwandi, demanding action.
Bandh was observed in Bhiwandi and surrounding areas. At Asbeebi in Shantinagar, the police tried to disperse a mob, when they were attacked with stones, police said. Police lobbed teargas shells as well as resorted to lathi-charge.
At Nagaon, a mob pelted stones and forced closure of shops. At Vanzar Patti Naka, protesters blocked the traffic on the Bhiwandi-Ahmedabad road for hours, and police lathicharged to clear the road.
ACP Shivaji Patil and 20 policemen were injured in various stone-pelting incidents. Thane Police Commissioner KP Raghuvanshi has ordered deployment of 753 policemen, 200 reserved policemen, a company of State Reserved Police Force, and Riot Control Platoon in sensitive areas.
A flag-march was held in the morning.
DCP Bhiwandi MK Bhosale as well as Raghuvanshi appealed to the citizens not to believe rumours.
Meanwhile, police have registered case against unidentified persons under IPC section 295 (injuring or defiling place of worship) and section 67-a of Information Technology Act over the Facebook post.