Monday, January 22, 2007

The serenity of Ulsoor lake disturbed

The serenity of Ulsoor lake disturbed
Deccan Herald

The picturesque and soothing ambience of the Ulsoor lake area turned ghoulish on Sunday, just in the matter of a few hours. The entire stretch of road around the lake was strewn with glass pieces, following violence that broke out in the afternoon.

The picturesque and soothing ambience of the Ulsoor lake area turned ghoulish on Sunday, just in the matter of a few hours.

The entire stretch of road around the lake was strewn with glass pieces, following violence that broke out in the afternoon.

Dozens of autorickshaws, two lorries and many two-wheelers were burnt down by miscreants between 3 pm and 6 pm, in the area.

Not only the lake area, but the entire Ulsoor area resembled a battle field with scenes of burnt vehicles and shops all over. All roads wore a deserted look as residents remained indoors, despite being holiday on Sunday. In Murphy Town, where Viraat Hindu Samajothsava was organised, the residents were gripped with fear as some houses were looted.

Guarding closed shops

Though owners of shops had downed the shutters, they were seen standing in front of their shops to guard them.

They refused to leave the place despite clamping of prohibitory order by the police.

As many as 30 shops were set afire, including 28 at the Corporation Market on Murphy Town main road, and a few residential houses were looted by miscreants.

“We have to safeguard our shops by ourselves...Police are not cooperating...Miscreants may strike again,” Abdul Haleem, one of the shop owners on Murphy Town main road, said.

House looted

A house belonging to one Abdul Khudus on the main road of Murphy Town was looted by miscreants during violence. Mr Khudus’ family was not at home when the incident happened.

The entire house has been ransacked and all valuables, including jewellery and cash, were looted by miscreants. “As a precaution I went to my sister’s place in Shivajinagar along with my family. But miscreants have targeted my house. They have looted every thing,” Abdul Khudus, the house owner, said.

RESIDENTS’ KINDNESS

But for the kind-hearted residents of A N M Road near Ulsoor lake, two more would have joined the list of victims of Sunday’s violence.

When miscreants were chasing the driver and the cleaner -- Palani Adams and Anbu -- of a lorry, which was waylaid and set afire, the residents gave them asylum in their house and rescued them.

Saved in time!

“We saw them being chased by the miscreants from a distance. Soon after they (the driver and the cleaner) entered the road, we asked them to hide in a house and kept them till the miscreants went away,” Ms Vatsala, a resident who gave shelter, told Deccan Herald.

The incident took place around 3.30 pm and both the driver and the cleaner were hiding in the house till 7 pm.

‘Grateful’

“I am very grateful to the residents. If they had not rescued us, we would have been killed,” a beleaguered Mr Palani told Deccan Herald.

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