By Twocircles.net Staff Reporter
Rourkela: Rourkela in Odisha saw clashes among two communities on Monday during Ganesh visarjan after members of the majority community used abusive slogans near the Muslim area of Nala Road on Monday night, following which section 144 of CrPC was imposed in the Steel City.
The situation remains tense but under control and no casualties have been reported.
According to eyewitnesses, most of the majority community people were drunk and backed by VHP and Bajrang Dal, who later burned few cars and looted a shop from a minority community.
Soon, the tensions spread to Balasore and Pattamundai town of Kendrapara district, according to a report in Indian Express.
According to the Express report, “Pattamundai town of Kendrapara district continued to simmer as members of minority community opposed the use of loudspeakers and beating of drums in front of a mosque during an immersion procession of Ma Khudurukuni, a local deity. More than than 1000 people blocked the Pattamundai-Rajnagar road demanding strict action against the people who prevented them from using the loudspeakers.”
Similarly, In Soro town of Balasore, police lifted the 12-hour curfew which they had imposed Monday evening following incidents of communal violence since last three days, the Express report added.
This is the second such incident of communal tension in Rourkela in two months. On On July 14 this year, an ‘objectionable message’ on WhatsApp shared by a youth from majority community resulted in tension among both the communities. To control the situation, Police administration had imposed Section 144 of the CrPC in the city and this helped averted any chances of clashes.
Rourkela comes under the Sundargarh district of Odisha. In 1964, the district saw one of the worst communal riots in the country, where more than 1,500 people lost their lives. As per 2011 census 2.17% of people follow Islam in Odisha. Rourkela is the third largest city in Odisha and was shortlisted as one of the SMART Cities under Government of India’s’ SMART City Mission last year.