Internet services have been suspended and prohibitory orders are in place in Jharkhand’s Jamshedpur after communal clashes erupted between Hindus and Muslims on Sunday following the alleged desecration of a Ram Navami flag, PTI reported.
Members of both communities resorted to stone-throwing, arson and damaging vehicles in Shastrinagar. A mob also burnt an autorickshaw in the Kadma area, forcing the police to fire tear gas shells.
Tension had been brewing in Shastrinagar since Saturday after members of a local organisation found the desecrated flag. Several Hindutva outfits asked the police to arrest the accused persons within 24 hours, reported The Indian Express.
An unidentified resident, however, accused the police and the city administration of inaction.
“A peace committee meeting was called comprising both communities in which lower rank police personnel participated, however, the matter could not be sorted,” the resident told the newspaper. “Even on Sunday evening, a few locals wanted to apprise the police of probable violence but officers could not be reached.”
Jharkhand Director General of Police Ajay Singh told The Indian Express that any lapses on part of the authorities will be investigated.
On Monday, Senior Superintendent of Police Prabhat Kumar said that a first information report was registered in connection with the violence and that over 50 persons, including state Bharatiya Janata Party leader Abhay Singh, have been arrested, reported PTI.
Kumar said that the situation is under control now. But the authorities have banned gatherings of four or more persons under Section 144 of the Code of Criminal Procedure.
Deputy Commissioner Vijaya Jadhav said some anti-social elements are trying to disturb the peace and sought cooperation from the citizens.
“We have been keeping a strict vigil on the situation and deployed adequate police force, a Quick Response Team, a Magistrate, Rapid Action Force personnel and other anti-riot resources to maintain law and order,” she said.