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Communal tension in Jammu after temple ‘desecration’

The suspect, identified as Yasir Alfaz of Shiva village in Doda district, was arrested. Police said he was of unsound mind.

Written by Arun Sharma | Jammu | Updated: June 15, 2016 8:41:21 am
jammu temple, Jammu desecration of temple, temple desecration, Aap Shambu temple, Jammu, temple, india news Buses set ablaze by protesters in Jammu on Tuesday. (Express Photo)

Communal Tension gripped Jammu as an angry crowd, protesting against the alleged desecration of a temple here, attacked a police station and set vehicles ablaze on Tuesday night.

Sources said trouble began in the evening when a youth entered Aap Shambu temple in Janipura area and broke the protective glass in front of the idols. He also allegedly misbehaved with women performing aarti.

The suspect, identified as Yasir Alfaz of Shiva village in Doda district, was arrested. Police said he was of unsound mind. Sources said Alfaz ransacked the temple amid unconfirmed reports about IS leader Abu Bakr-al-Baghdadi being seriously injured in a US airstrike in Raqqa, Syria.

Meanwhile, CCTV footage of the ‘desecration’ went viral on social media, adding fuel to the fire. As angry protesters gathered outside the police station, Alfaz’s brother Tanvir was taken into protective custody.

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The crowd outside the police station demanded immediate arrest of both the youths. Some of them demanded that the accused be handed over to them. They also sought suspension of two police officers who allegedly backed the accused and abused the complainants.

While the police tried to resist their attempts to break into the police station, the protesters set ablaze three vehicles, including two buses of a police school. They threw stones at the police station as well as shops belonging to the other community. The police lobbed teargas shells to disperse them.

Reinforcements were rushed to Janipura to prevent protesters from heading towards the old city. Senior civil and police officers were camping at the police control room to monitor the situation. Jammu District Magistrate Simrandeep Singh denied reports of curfew in Janipura.

The Ram Sena has called a bandh in Jammu Wednesday to protest the alleged desecration of the temple.

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