Friday, October 29, 2004

Communal clash in city

Communal clash in city over place of worship
Times of India

Bangalore: Ten persons were injured and two houses torched in a communal clash that broke out at the sensitive K.G. Halli on Thursday. Police lobbed teargas shells and resorted to lathicharge. Prohibitory orders have been clamped in K.G. Halli and D.J. Halli police station limits till the midnight of October 31. The clash started around 10 am near HKBK College of Engineering near Nagavara over a piece of land and a place of worship adjoining it.

The dispute between Vyalikaval Housing Coop Society and a group headed by a senior politician had started years ago. “On Thursday, a group headed by a society member objected to the place of worship encroaching into the land owned by him. An argument followed and in the melee, the steel railing on the compound wall of the place of worship was damaged,’’ a senior police officer said. The rumour that it has been demolished ended up in the communal clash. The two groups armed with clubs and weapons clashed at Tannery Road, Govindpura, Nagavara junction, Karu Mariamma Temple, Marimuthu junction and parts of Dinnur Road. Police resorted to lathicharge at several places to quell angry groups indulging in stone-throwing. Tear-gas shells were lobbed thrice. Two houses, a wine shop, audio shop, three scooters and two autorickshaws were burnt. No casualties were reported.

An angry mob prevented Congress leader C.K. Jaffer Sharief from entering the area. He had gone there to pacify the groups. His vehicle was damaged. Police have arrested over 50 persons and more than 20 platoons of armed police have been deployed. Senior police officers, including police commissioner S. Mariswamy, visited the spot. Jurisdictional DCP (East) Jayaprakash Naik and other officers are camping in the area. The police used the public address system to contain rumours of fresh violence. We’ll organise peace committee meetings after the situation calms down,’’ police said. Traffic was affected on Nagavara Main road, Lingarajapuram- Kammanahalli Road, Outer Ring Road between Hennur and Hebbal. Now things are under control, they added.

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