Restrictions imposed in western India after Hindu-Muslim clashes
New Delhi, May 3 (EFE).- The western Indian city of Jodhpur on Tuesday witnessed clashes between members of the Hindu majority and the Muslim minority during the celebrations of the end of Ramadan and a Hindu festival.
The incident marked a fresh episode of violence amid growing religious tensions in different parts of the country.
“The tension arising from a clash between two groups at Jalori Gate, Jodhpur, is unfortunate. The administration has been instructed to maintain peace and order at all costs,” Ashok Gehlot, chief minister of the state of Rajasthan – where Jodhpur is located -, tweeted in Hindi.
The clashes began on Monday night, according to police, on the eve of Eid-al-Fitr that marks the end of Ramadan, which this year coincided with a Hindu celebration known as Akshaya Tritiya.
The dispute began when flags in honor of a Hindu god was placed on a statue where the Muslim community usually places its own insignia on the occasion of Eid-al-Fitr.
“There was a dispute about removing the flags,” Additional Director General (Law and Order) Hawa Singh Ghumaria told the Indian Express newspaper.
The disagreement escalated with stones being pelted and clashes between the two groups, before the police were brought in to control the situation.
Several policemen suffered minor injuries, and fresh clashes broke out again on Monday, city police commissioner Navjyoti Gogoi told the newspaper.
The authorities have imposed restrictions on telephone and the internet, and a curfew until Wednesday.
These clashes comes after incidents of violence between Hindus and Muslims last month in at least six regions in India, including the capital New Delhi, during the religious processions to celebrate the birth of Hindu gods Ram and Hanuman.
Human rights groups such as Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch have denounced increasing discrimination of Muslims in India under the ruling Hindu nationalist party BJP, led by Prime Minister Narendra Modi. EFE