The Prayagraj Police on Wednesday put up posters of 59 persons allegedly involved in the violence on June 10 during protests against remarks by two Bharatiya Janata Party spokespersons about Prophet Muhammad, PTI reported.
Protests had erupted in several parts of India on Friday against the remarks made by Nupur Sharma and Naveen Jindal about the Prophet. On June 5, the BJP suspended Sharma and expelled Jindal after a diplomatic backlash from many Muslim-majority countries.
Demonstrations took place in Delhi, Uttar Pradesh, Jharkhand, Karnataka, West Bengal, and Telangana, among other places. In most cities, including Delhi, Kolkata and Prayagraj, the protests started after Friday prayers.
On Wednesday, the police said that the posters have been put up in public spaces and will also be circulated on social media to help identify the accused persons.
“We have video and photographic evidence showing that these people were involved in stone pelting and other illegal activities on June 10,” Prayagraj Senior Superintendent of Police Ajay Kumar told PTI. “However, their identification is pending. We have appealed to the general public to help us in their identification.”
He said that arrests were being made in accordance with the law after the identities of the accused persons have been confirmed.
Kumar said that 40 persons have been named in first information reports and 92 arrested in connection with the June 10 violence in Prayagraj. Overall, 333 persons have been arrested from eight districts.
“If they don’t surrender, warrants will be issued, [and their] houses will be auctioned under relevant sections of the law,” he told ANI.
The police officer also said that two pistols and a piece of paper have been recovered from the house of activist Javed Mohammed, who has been accused of conspiring to carry out violent protests in Prayagraj.
“The paper reads things like ‘reach Atala area as soon as possible, we do not trust the courts now’,” Kumar said. “It has been included in the investigation.”
The district administration had razed Javed’s house on Sunday afternoon, claiming that it was an illegal construction.
Posters in Ranchi too
In response to the June 10 violence in the city, Ranchi Police on Tuesday also released posters of those allegedly involved in the violence, but later removed them from public purview, The Hindu reported.
The police had put up posters of 33 accused persons near Raj Bhavan and sought information from the public. However, they removed the posters without giving any reason, the newspaper reported.
The move to make the pictures public came on a June 13 directive by Jharkhand Governor Ramesh Bais.
Protests in Ranchi had led to the death of two demonstrators and over 13 more were injured after protests against the remarks about the Prophet turned violent on June 10.
Police personnel, including Ranchi Senior Superintendent of Police Surendra Kumar Jha, were among those injured.