Maharashtra: Riot-hit Aurangabad limps back to normalcy; curbs still on

Two persons were killed in clashes between groups of two communities over illegal water connections.

Published: 13th May 2018 04:26 PM  |   Last Updated: 13th May 2018 04:26 PM   |  A+A-

Rioters hurl stones and sticks during a communal riot that escalated due to clamping illegal water connection in a religious place in Moti Karanja area of Aurangabad on Friday. | PTI


AURANGABAD: An uneasy calm today prevailed in this central Maharashtra city where two persons were killed in clashes between groups of two communities over illegal water connections as police kept a tight vigil to avoid any untoward incident.

The situation in the riot-hit city in the Marathwada region, about 350 km from Mumbai, has been brought under control, but certain restrictions remain in place, police officials said.

Internet services remained suspended and prohibitory orders clamped under the CrPC section 144, banning assembly of people, were in force in the city, where large number of police personnel were deployed, a senior police official said.

The last rites of the 17-year-old boy, who was killed allegedly in police firing, was performed today in the city where the situation is normal, Inspector General of Police (Aurangabad) Milind Bharambe told PTI.

"We have deployed adequate police force in the area to avoid any untoward situation. To curb rumour mongering through social media, we have suspended Internet services," he said.

"We have appealed to people not to believe in rumours and help the police in maintaining law and order," Bharambe added.

The clashes between groups of two communities started in Moti Karanja area around 10 on Friday night and spread to Gandhi Nagar, Raja Bazaar, Shah Ganj and Sarafa localities, another police official said.

The police fired in the air and lobbed teargas shells to control the situation, he said.

Two persons were killed in the violence, which also left more than 60 people, including police personnel, injured, he said.

The second deceased was a 65-year-old man who was trapped in his house when an adjoining shop was set on fire by rioters, the official said.

Around 100 shops were set on fire and more than 40 vehicles destroyed, he said.

Besides the local police, personnel from the State Reserve Police Force (SRPF) have been deployed in the violence-affected areas, he said.

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

More than a dozen people were taken into custody for interrogation, he said.

According to local sources, 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.

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

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