Updated: March 17, 2021 9:59:59 am
A week after tension between two communities led to violence in Bhainsa town of northern Telangana’s Nirmal district, the police Tuesday said they have arrested 38 persons so far and that they are on the lookout for 70 others for their involvement in the violence.
Addressing the press, Y Nagi Reddy, inspector-general (north zone), said that 26 cases were registered in connection to the violence and most of the accused were members of the Hindu Vahini. As many as 38 persons, including four children, belonging to both the communities, have been arrested and remanded in judicial custody, he said.
“Apart from those arrested the involvement of 70 others is established and efforts are ongoing to apprehend them,” he said.
As many as 12 persons, including three police officers, were injured in stone-pelting on the night of March 7. During the violence, according to police, four houses, thirteen shops, four autorickshaws, six four-wheelers, and five two-wheelers were set ablaze in the Panjesha Masjid area, Korba Gully, Cloth Merchant Road, Purana Bazar, and Market Road areas by the rioters.
“People belonging to one group were informed, gathered, and were sent to places under the guidance of Abdul Khabeer alias Baba, AIMIM party’s Counsellor from 15th ward. The second group was led by Thota Vijay, Counsellor from 8th Ward and ex-president of Hindu Vahini. Some of the arsons committed on the second and the third day and night in the Pardi and Mahagaon villages were led by Santhosh, who is the district president of Hindu Vahini,” the IGP stated.
Explaining the turn of events, he said that two youngsters on a two-wheeler hit a youth from another community in Zulfiqar galli. When the youth and his friends went to Batti galli in search of the two bike-borne youngsters, they were beaten up by the youngsters along with their friends. The fight escalated after one of the friends again went to Zulfiqar galli to buy alcohol and picked up an argument with people belonging to the other community, which led to stone-pelting by members of the two communities. The IGP said that police constable Ramana Yadav, who was on duty at the police picket, suffered a head injury while trying to disperse the crowd.
On receiving the initial information at 10.30 pm, the IGP said, DSP Bhainsa and Inspector of Bhainsa Town police station rushed to the spot with a platoon of Telangana State Special Police (TSSP) and special parties to disperse the gathering.
Brushing aside the allegations of bias in the investigation, the IGP said that the accused involved in the cases were identified based on CCTV footage and their call data records (CDRs) were examined to identify their associates. “There’s no truth in the allegations of bias on the part of the Police department. Police will act impartially in the investigation and culprits will be arrested regardless of the organisation they belong to,” said Nagi Reddy, appealing to the people of Bhainsa to maintain communal harmony in the town.
As many as 27 pickets were posted in the entire town and round-the-clock patrolling was arranged by deploying the patrol cars from other police stations. In all, a total of 525 police personnel, including those drawn from neighboring districts, were deputed to maintain peace and order in the town. The Superintendent of Police Vishnu S.Warrier is camping at Bhainsa and monitoring the situation.
Meanwhile, Bandi Sanjay Kumar, president of the Telangana BJP, reiterated that activists of Hindu Vahini were being tortured by the police. Speaking to the press after visiting the arrested persons in prison, he said that the party will complain to the Union Home Ministry against the use of third-degree interrogation methods by the police. He demanded a judicial enquiry into the recent violent incidents in Bhainsa town.
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