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Situation in Maharashtra’s riot-hit Aurangabad ‘tense but under control’

The situation in Maharashtra's riot-hit Aurangabad city on Tuesday remained tense, but under control, four days after the violence claimed two lives and left over 60 people, including 12 policemen, injured

Aurangabad: The situation in Maharashtra’s riot-hit Aurangabad city on Tuesday remained tense, but under control, four days after the violence claimed two lives and left over 60 people, including 12 policemen, injured.

The police have registered six cases in which nearly 3,000 unidentified people were booked for offences like arson, rioting and damaging public property, an official said.

Internet services were restored this morning and prohibitory orders clamped under Section 144 of the CrPC revoked in the central Maharashtra city, he said.

Besides the local police, seven State Reserve Police Force (SRPF) battalions were deployed in the violence-affected areas, the official said.

Additional Director General of Police Bipin Bihari, after reviewing the situation in the city, located in the Marathwada region, admitted that the police had failed to prevent and contain the spread of violence and to take action against the rioters.

Acting Commissioner of Police Milind Bharambe will conduct an inquiry into the allegations against a city police inspector for not preventing the violence and ignore complaints about it, Bihari told reporters here on Monday.

Earlier, a purported video of some police personnel walking with rioters during the violence surfaced, prompting the state police to order an inquiry into it.

“We have asked people (who have the video recording) to deposit the footage to the police. We will check its authenticity and appropriate action will be taken if we find their (policemen’s) involvement,” Bihari had said.

Two persons – a 65-year-old man and a 17-year-old boy were killed and around 60 others, including a dozen policemen, injured in clashes between groups of two communities over illegal water connections on 11 May.

Several shops and scores of vehicles were torched during the riots in the city, located about 350 km from Mumbai.

The 17-year-old boy was killed allegedly in police firing. Besides, the other deceased an elderly man was trapped in his house when an adjoining shop was set on fire by rioters, an official had earlier said.

Petrol bombs and kerosene-soaked balls made of rags were found during a search operation, the police said.

The clashes broke out between the groups of two communities in Moti Karanja area around 10 PM on 11 May and spread to Gandhi Nagar, Raja Bazaar, Shah Ganj and Sarafa localities, a police official had earlier said.

The tension was brewing in Moti Karanja area for the last few days as the municipal corporation was carrying out a drive against illegal water connections, according to sources in Aurangabad.

It got a communal colour when an illegal water connection at a place of worship in the area was removed, the sources said.

The violence appeared to be pre-planned as shops were targetted selectively in some areas, a senior police officer said.

 

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