COIMBATORE: Tension prevailed in the city after a Hindu Munnani (HM) functionary was allegedly assaulted by two unidentified men on Saturday night. Soon after the incident, three Muslim youth were attacked in front of the Coimbatore Medical College Hospital (CMCH) where the injured man was being treated. Police beefed up security in the city and six special teams were formed to investigate both incidents.
Police identified the injured HM functionary as S Ramakrishnan (36), a resident of Thayammal Layout near. He is HM's vice president for Ukkadam. On Saturday at around 10.30 pm, police said Ramakrishnan was riding home on his bike when he was waylaid and allegedly assaulted with an iron rod by two unidentified men.
A few locals admitted Ramakrishnan, who sustained grievous injuries, to the CMCH. On his complaint, Podanur police registered a case under Section 307 (Attempt to murder) of the Indian Penal Code.
Meanwhile, many Hindu Munnani supporters picketed the hospital demanding action against the miscreants. Police held talks with the functionaries and assured action, however, a few of them allegedly assaulted three Muslim youth crossing the hospital on their bikes.
A release from the Popular Front of India on Sunday claimed that the trio's bikes were damaged in retaliation to the assault on Ramakrishnan. The police registered a case and deployed over 300 police personnel at major junctions, including at CMCH, to prevent any untoward incident. They also intensified vehicle checks and night patrolling.
"Surveillance has been stepped up across the city. We have recovered CCTV camera footage from the crime scene and the special teams are tracing the miscreants. Only an investigation will reveal if it was a communal issue," said City Police Commissioner S Davidson Devasirvatham.
HM State President Kadeswara C Subramaniam and BJP Mahila Morcha President Vanathi Srinivasan called on Ramakrishnan at the hospital. On Sunday, HM cadre staged a protest in front of the Collectorate, before later withdrawing it. They also submitted a petition at the Commissioner's office.