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Mosque vandalized in Gopalganj, police officer accused of raising slogans with the rioters

– Radiance News Service

GOPALGANJ, Bihar, 4 October 2023: The Mahavir Akhara procession turned violent here on Sunday. An unruly, violent 20,000-strong mob vandalized a mosque in the path of the procession within the jurisdiction of Hathua Police Station. The incident led to heightened tensions between two religious communities causing tension and communal disharmony in the locality.

According to the police, a clash between two groups led to subsequent intensified violence. However, the police teams managed to swiftly control the situation and restore law and order.

The video of the incident went viral on social media, featuring local SDPO Anurag Kumar chanting ‘Jai Sri Ram’ slogans while accompanying the Akhara procession. The video shows the vandalized mosque in the background.

In the Press release issued by the Superintendent of Police, Gopalganj dated 02 October, it is mentioned that “A Mahaviri procession was organized under Hathua police station on date 01.10.2023. There was a clash between two communities near the mosque located in Chiktoli. There were about 20,000 people in the Akhara who were getting very angry regarding this. SDPO Hathua Anurag Kumar chanted the slogan of the Akhara from the mike of the Akhara for driving out the angry crowd from the mosque and to save it from being completely vandalized. As it seems inappropriate to raise religious slogans in police uniform, the entire matter will be investigated by a senior officer.”

According to some eyewitnesses belonging to the Muslim community, “The situation deteriorated when multiple Akhara groups approached the mosque and engaged in an ugly confrontation with the police.”

Muslims claim that they reacted to the aggression from the opposite side. It is reported that while several Muslims were apprehended in the aftermath of the incident, very few of those who attacked the mosque were taken into custody by the Police.

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