HYDERABAD: Reviving the 1989 nightmare that sent parts of Hyderabad near the river Musi back into the stone age, the communal riots that erupted on Saturday night continued for the third day running on Monday, forcing police to impose curfew in the entire Old City.
One person was stabbed to death, dozens of houses were set afire and property looted and many injured in fresh bouts of violence across the Old City particularly in Shalibanda, Aliabad and Moghulpura near the Charminar. With Hanuman Jayanti to be celebrated on Tuesday, the police, anticipating more trouble, clamped curfew under 17 police station limits in the South Zone, covering the Old City. The curfew came into force from 7 p.m.
Director-General of Police RR Girish Kumar, who visited the troubled areas, told reporters that curfew would be in force till normalcy was restored.
The day remained peaceful, except for a few skirmishes at Aliabad and Lal Darwaza, till afternoon when mobs went on a rampage in Shalibanda and other areas. Police lobbed tear gas shells but the situation did not improve. In the interior localities of Shalibanda and Aliabad, groups belonging to different communities clashed with each other and resorted to stone-pelting. The mobs torched several houses and went on a looting spree. Mobs of a particular community targeted pedestrians and vehicle-riders belonging to another community, thrashing them, robbing them and setting ablaze their vehicles.
An employee of HSBC bank, Satyanarayana of Jagadgirigutta, was stabbed to death at Shalibanda while three others including a person identified as Balraj were stabbed in other parts of the violence-hit areas.
City Police Commissioner A K Khan said four persons were stabbed and two of them suffered minor injuries.
Khan said: ‘‘We have imposed curfew to prevent further deterioration in law and order.’’ Targeted attacks continued unabated for hours on the main road from Charminar to Shalibanda junction.
Not a single police picket was to be seen anywhere near the bylanes from where the miscreants were pouring on to the main road.
The entire forces, including the Rapid Action Force (RAF), were concentrated at the Shalibanda junction.
Though the police chased away the mob from the main road, they gathered again and again and created havoc.
The violence spread over the five police station limits of Charminar, Moghulpura, Falaknuma, Shalibanda and Hussainialam.
A wine shop near the Mecca Masjid was set on fire while several vehicles belonging to media organisations were also damaged. At Khilwat, a van carrying the cash of a private bank was attacked by miscreants. The mob injured the three staff members of the bank and stole the cash.