Insights:

  • 2 killed, over 60 injured, including 31 policemen
  • Over 60 shops looted and set afire
  • Video grabs policemen walking with rioters carrying material to torch shops and vehicles
  • ACP Govardhan Kolekar critical, was seriously injured in the throat
  • Over 3000 rioters booked for at least five offences
  • Internet services suspended, Section 144 imposed

Communal tension crippled Aurangabad city from the state of Maharashtra leaving 2 people dead and over 60 injured. It is learnt that the official from Aurangabad Municipal Corporation were on a crackdown to check illegal water connections in the Moti Karanja area of the city. The officials removed an illegal tap connection at a shrine that belonged to a particular community. The clashes reportedily started after people from that community, in a fit of rage damaged the water connection of a shrine of one other community.

As the news spread across the city, the mob swelled escalating tensions. Police had to resort to firing to control the mob. Over 70 rubber bullets were fired. A 17-year old boy and 72-year old man are ones who lost their lives in the ensuing communal clashes. The 17-year old boy died in police firing. The 72-year old, disabled man died of suffocation and burn injuries when his house was burned down by rioting mob with him inside. The rioters have reportedly also looted the house before setting it afire.

The clashes started on Friday night and soon spread to the parts of the city. Internet services have been suspended as a caution. Also, Section 144 has been imposed by the city administration and the police department is on a hunt for the miscreants.

About 60 shops were first looted and then torched by mobs of unknown assailants. It is estimated that a damage of about 100 crores to property and business has been done since the clashes. Rioters repeatedly used crackers to torch vehicles and shops, in a first.

The police department has booked over 3000 people involved in the riots. Charges such as attempt to murder, rioting, and various sections of Arms Act have been registered.

Police ‘Involvement’ in Aurangabad Riots

A nine minute video grab shows policemen as mute spectators accompanying rioters who were carrying violent material that were used to set vehicles and shops on fire. This has rounded up police department in questions. The acting police chief of Aurangabad, Commissioner of Police Milind Bharambe has admitted that the police department has failed in handling the clashes. The Director General of Police (law and order) Bipin Bihari has assured that the policemen involved in the clips will not be spared. 37 policemen were injured in the riot. Assistant Commissioner of Police, Govardhan Kolekar was seriously injured in the stone pelting by rioters and remains critical.


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