A curfew was imposed in the city of Amravati after further incidents of violence on Saturday morning when a large crowd of hundreds broke out, destroying shops and private property, while local police, greatly outnumbered, couldn’t stop them despite a lathicharge charge. Subsequently, the Maharashtra Police sent four companies from the State Reserve Police Force (SRPF) and another 125 policemen to stop the mob.
Around 10 a.m., various news channels showed a mob destroying shops in the presence of police officers, including a female police officer seen accusing them. A police officer who tried to lathicharing the mob was blatantly confronted by the men who were seen yelling at him even as the female officer tried to push them back, defending the officer. The news channels also showed several videos in which the police are seen following the mafia and trying unsuccessfully to disperse them.
A senior Maharashtra police official said Saturday afternoon: “The violence is confined to the city of Amravati and the situation is now under control. We have sent four SRPF companies and 125 police officers and we will send more if necessary ”. An Amravati police officer confirmed that the situation was tense but under control in the afternoon, adding that a curfew was imposed as a preventive measure.
The violence in Amravati began on Friday afternoon. However, the vandals on Saturday are said to be from a political party unlike on Friday, when it was provoked by members of the minority community.
On Friday, violence broke out in Amravati, Nanded and Malegaon, where some people from the minority community held a demonstration without proper police permission to protest against the violence reported in Tripura against members of the minority community. The Interior Minister, Dilip Walse Patil, had promised on Friday severe action against those who indulge in violence and the state. BJP he had called for a bandh in Amravati until 4pm on Saturday to mark his protest against the violence.
After the violence on Saturday, Shiv Sena Leader Sanjay Raut told a news channel: “There was no reason to call a bandh on Friday. Those who asked for the bandh must also be behind the violence. Because the Bhartiya Janata Party cannot do politics without using religious division or caste division or dangals (riots). The same image can be seen in Amravati. The organization (Academia Raza) that called for the protest does not have much courage or strength to carry out violence. Raza Academy is said to be a sister concern to BJP. “
“This is a major opposition conspiracy to destabilize Maharashtra and create public order problems. They first used central agencies such as ED, CBI, income tax, and NCB, but could not be successful. So now they are organizing riots to destabilize Maharashtra, but they will fail here too. The Raza Academy is not strong enough to orchestrate such violence and they have been provided with manpower to do so. “When asked who was behind the violence, Raut said:” We will arrest and expose them, real gangsters are different. They (the opposition) are the biggest enemies of Maharashtra. People are watching and they know who is behind the violence. “
On Saturday, opposition leader Devendra Fadnavis said the demonstrations in Maharashtra to protest the Tripura incident appear to be a well-orchestrated conspiracy to foment communal clashes, adding that it is regrettable and does not bode well for the state. “It is my ardent appeal to the people of both communities to keep the peace. No one should be allowed any kind of violence, “he said.
However, “what is shocking is that the protests have been based on an incident in Tripura that did not occur at all. The government and the police of Tripura have clarified with images that no mosque was burned ”. However, some segment seems to have spread the rumors using social networks to generate discomfort ”, alleged Fadnavis.
The former prime minister urged the government of Maha Vikas Aghadi (MVA) to initiate measures to restore communal harmony. He also demanded tough action against elected members of the ruling parties and warned those who shared the podium with those who protested and made provocative speeches.