PTI
Violence in Old City Area of Hyderabad
Violence erupted in the communally-sensitive Old City area here this afternoon following the Friday prayers, but government claimed that situation was under control by evening.

Andhra Pradesh Home Minister Sabitha Indra Reddy said the situation was under control, and action would be taken against the culprits.

Reddy reviewed the law and order situation with Police Commissioner Anurag Sharma and senior police officers following the violence. "We will identify them (those taking part in violence) from CCTV footages and stern action will be initiated against them," she later said.

Tension prevailed in the Old City today after police lobbed teargas shells to disperse a mob which pelted stones and burnt vehicles near the historic Charminar.

People marched towards Charminar after the Friday prayers. The historical structure has been barricaded, as Old City has witnessed communal tension over the past fortnight.

Some people wanted to hold prayers inside Charminar, were denied the permission, and threw stones at the police.

Two cars and three motor-bikes were burnt, and window panes of several other vehicles were damaged in stone-pelting in various places, police said.

Home Minister Reddy appealed the people to maintain peace and not to believe the rumours. "The situation is now under control and peaceful," she said. "We are taking all precautionary measures to restore peace in Old City, as Hyderabad is known for communal harmony."

A few protesters were taken into custody. There were reports of some policemen and protesters getting injured.

Prohibitory orders were imposed in the troubled areas. Security forces including Rapid Action Force have been deployed near Bhagyalakshmi temple abutting the Charminar.

The trouble started about a fortnight ago when members of a community protested the state government's decision to allow covering of a shed over the temple with a tarpaulin sheet.

Shops and business establishments continued to remain closed in the Old City today, but traffic was normal by evening.

Hyderabad Police Commissioner Anurag Sharma told reporters that 40 persons were taken into custody in connection with the violent incidents and prohibitory orders have been imposed under section 144 CrPC under the limits of Mirchowk, Chatrinaka, Shalibanda and Charminar police stations.

"We are examining the role of these persons," Sharma said adding that the mob damaged and torched at least five four-wheelers and as many two-wheelers, besides damaging six police vehicles at Charminar, Gulzar House, Mirchowk, Kilwath Road, Asra hospital and Kalikaman.

According to him, the situation in the Old City continues to remain tense but was under control. "We are tyring our best to bring back normalcy in the troubled areas," Sharma said.

Additional forces have been deployed in all the sensitive areas to maintain peace, he said.

At least ten persons, including five police personnel were injured during the stone pelting incidents, he said.

Giving details of the violence, he said after the prayers at Mecca Masjid, around 2,000 slogan shouting persons proceeded towards Charminar and started pelting stones at the police personnel.

Scores of protesters also pelted stones at police vehicles while around 500 youths hurled stones on police parties deployed in front of Bhagyalakshmi temple, prompting the police to use mild force, Sharma said.

As the situation at Charminar became tense, police fired teargas shells to disperse the unruly mob, he said.

To a question, he said passage was given to people to pass from the Charminar area.
Emerging story. Watch this space for updates as more details come in
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Digression

4/D-37
Nov 17, 2012
12:45 PM

Secularists are so busy praying for violence in Mumbai (courtesy Thackeray) that they are oblivious of violenece happening in secular areas like Assam and Hyderabad.

RSM, Delhi
3/D-13
Nov 17, 2012
04:27 AM

"What is stopping the police from arresting these anti-social elements?" Kautilya

It's called secularism India-style.


Fedup Indian, Hyderabad
2/D-101
Nov 16, 2012
09:12 PM

 Some people wanted to hold prayers inside Charminar, were denied the permission, and threw stones at the police.

So we do know who did it! What is stopping the police from arresting these anti-social elements?

Kautilya, Washington DC
1/D-88
Nov 16, 2012
07:28 PM

Jumme Ko Kiya Tune violence Ka Vada

Jumme Ko Nibhaya Tune bloodshed Ka Vada

Lo Phir Aaa Gaya Re Jumaa….So lets riot.

Riots following Friday(Jumma) Namaz has been a consistent pattern. It will continue.

Gambler, Thar
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