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Two dead in communal clashes in North Maharashtra town

Tuesday December 25, 2012 02:45:59 PM, Special Correspondent

Jalgaon (Maharashtra): Two persons belonging to different communities have been reported killed and scores including some policemen are injured in a communal violence that erupted Monday evening in Raver - a North Maharashtra town some 60 kms from here.


Police have imposed curfew and the situation is said to be under control but tense.


According to eyewitnesses, problem began on Monday evening when a funeral procession with music band passed through Maniar Bada Masjid at the time of Maghrib prayer and some youths requested to stop the music.


"The procession passed through peacefully after the argument. But while returning after the funeral, unruly mob started pelting stones and indulged in arson and looting", a local teacher said while speaking to on phone.


Soon violence spread to other parts of the town. Two local youths, Sanjay Dahngar and Rehman Tadvi died in the violence.


Incidents of attacks on people including women who were returning to Raver from Urus at nearby Rasulpur town were also reported.


Police took control of the town and imposed curfew from 04:00 in the morning.


Locals of the town are accusing the police of indiscriminately arresting the Muslim youths during the curfew.


"Today afternoon at around 12:30 pm, police picked up 10-12 youths from Gausia Masjid. The youths were preparing for Zuhur prayers. Police entered the mosque with their boots on and arrested the youths", said a local.


Raver, a town in North Maharashtra has a population of 35,000. Communal violence is becoming a routine in this town which has 40% Muslim population.


Two months back the town saw similar kind of violence at the time of Ganpati.


In 2008, communal clashes had disrupted normal life in the town for about a week.


Some people accuse the police of shielding the criminal elements and allege that it is why communal violence in routinely taking place in Raver.


"After the violence two months back, police instead of taking action against those involved in rioting, had arrested innocents and even members of Peace Committee belonging to Hindu and Muslim both communities", the teacher said on the condition of anonymity.






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