Communal clashes that broke out between Hindus and Muslims at Tikri Brahman village at Palwal in Haryana on Sunday left 39 people injured. Police have arrested 17 people.
Tikri Brahman village is a little over 30 km from Atali village in Ballabhgarh, which saw rioting in May and has been simmering since then.
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Police said the trigger for the violence on Sunday at the village was the alleged teasing of a Hindu girl, who was washing clothes at a tubewell, by some Muslim youth.
“There was an argument and some Hindu boys who were passing by got involved. A fight started between the boys,” the girl’s father-in-law alleged.
While the initial violence began after 2 pm and spread throughout the village, around 6 pm, “outsiders” from nearby villages got involved. Houses belonging to Muslims were targeted and looted, and their vehicles torched, police said.
“I didn’t even know what the argument was about. These men arrived at my house and they were heavily armed. They destroyed everything,” Amrudi, whose husband Qasmi works as a tempo driver in Palwal, alleged.
Villagers said tension had been simmering for over a year. At the heart of the dispute is a tract of land belonging to the village panchayat. “Even that issue had been sorted out. Both communities had actually sat down together and sorted the entire issue,” Singh said.