India police arrest 112 over religious clashes

Police in northern India have arrested 112 people following violence after a teenage boy died in clashes between two groups, amid anniversary celebrations of the day India became a republic.

The incident occurred in the Kasganj district of Uttar Pradesh state, where two religious groups hurled stones at one another during a motorcycle rally.

The violence escalated over the weekend with shops and vehicles set on fire.

Hindu and Muslim groups have blamed each other for the violence.

A police officer was quoted by the PTI news agency as saying that although the situation was now under control, there continued to be a heavy security presence in the area, with three drones also deployed for additional surveillance.

Officials have confirmed that the teenage boy died amid stone-pelting between the two groups, but it is not yet clear why the violence erupted.

A Muslim boy who was also injured in the violence is said to be in critical condition.

“A group of young people had organised a rally when they were stopped from shouting ‘long live India’ in a Muslim area. This led to arguments followed by firing and stone pelting. My son died in this violence and I want justice,” Sushil Gupta whose son died in the violence, told BBC Hindi’s Samiratmaj Mishra.

After the death of the teenager, residents told BBC Hindi that properties in Muslim areas of the district were attacked.

A law which prevents gatherings of more than four people in a single area has also been imposed in the district in a bid to prevent further violence.


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