Tension grips UP towns after protests against lynching

Tension gripped Uttar Pradesh's communally sensitive Agra and Meerut towns as hundreds of people, who tried to hold demonstrations in protest against the lynching of a Muslim youth in Jharkhand, clashed with the cops and pelted stones.

Members of a particular community tried to force closure of shops at Kashmiri Gate Bazar, Mantola and Sadar Bhatti areas in Agra on Monday resulting in clashes with the other community.

Police also made a lathi charge to disperse the mob, which indulged in heavy stone pelting, sources said.

Similar clashes had occurred at Meerut town also on Sunday, when a large number of people, mostly members of the Muslim community, tried to take out processions to protest the lynching.

Internet services were suspended in the town and security personnel had been deployed in strength to maintain order.

Police said that the marches were taken out without permission and added that around 50 people, including the president of the 'Yuva Samiti' president Badar Ali, have been booked on charges of rioting, violence and breach of peace in Meerut.

Similarly, the police have booked members of Indian Muslim Action Committee for rioting in Agra, sources said. 

Raids were being conducted to round up those, who had taken part in the demonstrations, sources said. ''We are trying to identify the trouble mongers.....they will be sternly dealt with,'' said a senior police official in Meerut.

Police said that senior officials had rushed to the town, which had a history of communal violence. Meerut was also very close to Muzaffarnagar, which was rocked by communal violence in 2013 in which 60 people were killed and thousands of others displaced.

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