31 Mar 2010
HYDERABAD: Curfew was extended to eight more localities on Tuesday as violence spread to other parts of Hyderabad and Secunderabad.
One person was killed and many more were injured in the latest clashes between people belonging to two different communities.
During the day, Old City, which is under curfew, remained peaceful but violence erupted in other areas like Musheerabad, Bholakpur, Kavadiguda and Begum Bazar.
Police were caught off-guard as they didn’t expect the riots to spread beyond the Old City. They had to open 16 rounds of fire into the air at Begam Bazar alone to bring the situation under control.
A 34-year-old Maharashtrian was bludgeoned to death with boulders at Mustaidpura under Tappachabutra limits. A resident of Shivrampally, he was a worker at a garment store in Putlibowli. He was on way to Puranapul along with his relative when he was attacked.
Earlier in the day, the Bajrang Dal and the Vishwa Hindu Parishad took out a massive rally, in which over 5,000 people participated, from a temple in Gowliguda Chaman to mark Hanuman Jayanti. The rally passed off peacefully till Musheerabad.
It is alleged that some from among the crowd pelted stones at a few shops and establishments. Rival groups retaliated instantly and within no time, the two sides were hurling stones at each other. Inadequate number of police forces emboldened the rioters. Additional forces had to be rushed in from the Old City to Musheerabad. But by then, a dozen vehicles were set on fire and a house was torched.
Mischief mongers rained stones on the police too. Similar scenes unfolded in the lanes and bylanes in Bholakpur and Kavadiguda where people from both communities targeted each other forcing the police to lob tear gas shells.
All roads leading to Bholakpur and Musheerabad were sealed off. The saffron brigade then broke up into two groups with one melting into the area and the other marching towards Ranigunj and from there, to the Tadbun Hanuman Temple. Shops and establishments on the stretch downed shutters. At Secunderabad, the mobs targeted a famous biryani joint and damaged its windows besides some vehicles. At the RP Road, they attacked a cafe. A place of worship, coming up in the middle of the road at Secunderabad, also came under attack. The angry mob pulled out and burnt religious flags in front of a battery of policemen. Nearly a dozen people, including two police constables, were also roughed up.
Similar scenes were witnessed at Begum Bazar Chatri during a religious procession. When police stopped it, enraged locals pelted stones on them and set on fire a police vehicle, damaged another and torched a police outpost and a place of worship.
A couple of business establishments were also set on fire forcing the police to lob tear gas shells and use rubber bullets.
Four persons were injured in the incident. ‘‘It was unprovoked.
We were only taking out a peaceful procession but the police tried to stop it,’’ a local, who suffered a head injury, said. The situation was brought under control after Rapid Action Forces (RAF) reached the spot and dispersed the mob.
Late at night, violence was reported from other parts of the city. A 25-year-old was attacked with sharp weapons by two motor-cycle borne miscreants at Malakpet. A car was also set ablaze in the same locality. At Feelkhana, people belonging to two communities fought a pitched battle, reports said.
Repeorts Indian Express