Communal clashes in Aurangabad over water, Sec 144 inposed

Aurangabad clashes

The clashes have injured at least 10 policemen, including an assistant commissioner Govardhan Kolekar and a couple of police station chiefs. Two men have lost their lives in the clash. As per reports, the violence that erupted on Friday night took place over water in the city. "Nine people have been admitted and the rest were discharged after being administered first aid", Dr Zine said.

The sources told DNA that staff of the Aurangabad municipal corporation was carrying out a drive against illegal water connection in the old city area on Friday. Civic officials were dismantling one such connection at a religious place when protesters demanded that they also act against another illegal connection at a religious structure belonging to a different community. Following this, a mob reportedly gathered at the spot and stone-pelting ensued. After the connection was cut-off, youth from both the groups took to streets to mark their protest against the water issue.

Shahganj, Nawabpura, Rajabazaar and Angribaug were the areas that faced the worst of the violence, but have been calmed down for now. According to reports, several shops and vehicles were damaged in the Chelipura and Motikaranja areas of Aurangabad also.

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Police forces were hurried to the neighborhood nevertheless they failed to control the violence and resorted to caning and shooting tear gas shells and plastic bullets to control the rampaging crowds. One of the deceased identified as Abdul Qadri died from a gunshot wound during police firing. Simultaneously, the police invoked section 144 of the CrPC prohibiting assembly of four or more persons in several parts of the city.

The authorities snapped Internet and social media networks in the city as a precaution late on Friday to prevent rumour-mongering. I appeal to the people to help the police in maintaining peace. After seeing the condition in the city, Maharashtra Police has imposed Section 144 in the city.

According to the police, a "minor" argument broke out between members of two communities in Gandhinagar area which resulted in downing of shutters by many local shopkeepers. In the tweet, the police also warned that strict action will be taken against any person found propagating such information.

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