Holi celebration in Jajpur district was marred by violence on Thursday with 15 people injured in group clash and bomb blasts in two separate incidents. The injured were rushed to the local hospital and later seven of them shifted to SCB Medical College and Hospital in Cuttack as their condition deteriorated. Armed police have been deployed at both the places.
In the first incident, eight people were injured including a policeman following a group clash and bomb attack at Talakaipara village under Bari police station limits.
The incident occurred when a group of people led by the husband of the local Sarpanch Prasant Rout raised some slogans that hurt the sentiments of the bystanders who happen to be the supporters of the defeated Sarpanch at Tarini Chhak of the village.
When the supporters of the defeated Sarpanch led by her brother-in-law Kirtan Dhal objected to slogan shouting, it led to the clash between the two groups. Both the groups hurled bombs at each other injuring eight of them including a policeman. The injured were rushed to the local hospital.
“Both the groups had enmity since the last panchayat elections following which a section of police had been deployed at the village.
The two groups were not crossing the border of their respective Sahi since then. During Holi celebration, the supporters of elected Sarpanch went to the rival area and passed derogatory remarks against their counterparts leading to the clash,” said Dipti Ranjan Ray, Sub-Divisional Police Officer (SDPO) of Jajpur.
Two platoons of police force have been deployed at the spot and the SDPO has been camping there.
As many as 10 unexploded bombs and four sharp weapons were seized from both the groups. Two separate FIRs have been filed but no one has been arrested so far, police said.
In the second incident, seven persons were injured when two groups clashed during Holi celebration in Bandhadiha under Dharmasala police station.
According to police, some motorcycle borne youths came to Sahapada at around 12.30 pm and attempted to apply colour on four persons belonging to a dalit family against their wishes. When they protested, the youths beat them up with sticks injuring all of them.
In retaliation, the other dalits attacked the youths injuring three of them. All the seven injured were rushed to the local hospital and later shifted to SCB Medical College and Hospital in Cuttack after their condition deteriorated.
Inspector-in-charge of Dharmasala police station Prasanta Kumar Majhi admitted the incident.
He said two separate FIRs have been filed in this connection and further investigation is on.
One platoon of police has been deployed at the village. No one has been arrested so far, he added.