Four days after the violent clashes between two groups, Shillong, the capital city of India’s north-eastern state of Meghalaya, remained tense on Monday as fresh bouts of violence erupted on Sunday night.
“Around 400 protesters pelted stones on a CRPF camp near Mowlai Bridge in Shillong last night in wake of curfew imposed following a fight between a woman and a bus conductor,” ANI quoted CRPF IG Prakash D as saying.
Earlier in the day, the police had raided the Mawkhar and Mission Compound areas near Motphran, a few metres away from the Punjabi Line area, to force some protesters to leave their hideouts.
In retaliation, the protesters overturned a police van near Roberts Hospital and assaulted an on-duty officer in public view. The police had to fire tear gas shells to disperse the rioting mob, a district administration official said.
After seven hours of relaxation on Sunday, curfew remained in several localities of the city following the clashes between the groups of local Khasi and Punjabi communities.
Centre deploys 1,000 central paramilitary personnel in Shillong
After the fresh incidents of stone pelting on Sunday night, the home ministry has deployed around 1,000 central paramilitary personnel to tackle the situation in Shillong.
"Around 10 companies of paramilitary forces have been sent to Meghalaya. A company of paramilitary force comprises of 100 personnel," PTI quoted a top Union Home Ministry official as saying.
“The Home Ministry has sanctioned the deployment of four additional CRPF and two ITBP companies. The state’s SF-10 commandoes along with a CRPF company and the district forces are already monitoring the situation on the ground,” Meghalaya DGP SB Singh said.
Singh said that the security would be increased in 14 localities of the Meghalaya capital that were mainly affected by the clashes.
Violence broke out last Thursday after a bus handyman – a boy from Khasi community – was allegedly assaulted by a group of residents of Them Metor area following an altercation with a Punjabi woman, according to district officials.
According to some local sources, the altercation between the boy and the woman took place over the issue bus parking in front of a public water tap.
The small altercation led to the violence in the otherwise peaceful Shillong. At least 10 people, including a police officer, were injured in the clashes. Rioting mob also set a house, a shop and five vehicles on fire.
(With inputs from agencies)