Amravati in Maharashtra has been burning since November 12 (Friday) due to back-to-back stone-pelting incidents and damage to public and private property. Sandip Patil, additional police commissioner, has imposed a four-day curfew in the city under sections 144(1), (2), (3) of the CrPc to avoid any further incidents. As per the orders, only people with medical emergencies can come out of the house. Additionally, not more than five people can gather at a place.
The series of incidents started on Friday during rallies called by the Muslim organisations protesting against an alleged incident of burning down a mosque in Tripura. Such rallies took place in Nanded, Malegaon, Washim and Yayatmal other than Amravati. Notably, Tripura Police have clarified that the alleged incident that led to the rallies in Maharashtra had never occurred in Tripura. Also, these rallies took place without permission from the Police.
Statement by Home Ministry
Union Home Ministry issued a statement regarding the violence in which the ministry urged people not to get misguided by the fake reports regarding Tripura. It further urged people to maintain peace at all costs.
The press release that was issued on Saturday says, “There have been news reports that have been circulating that a mosque in Kakraban area of Gomati district in Tripura has been damaged and vandalised. These news reports are fake and are a complete misrepresentation of facts. The mosque in the Dargabazar area of Kakraban has not been damaged, and the Tripura Police in the Gomati district is working to maintain peace and tranquillity.
There has been no reported case of damage to the structure of any Masjid in Tripura in the recent past. There is no report of simple or grievous injury or rape or death of any person in these incidents, as alleged in some social media posts.
People should maintain calm and should not be misguided by such fake reports. For instance, in Maharashtra, there have been reports of violence and unsavoury statements that are aimed at disturbing peace and harmony based on fake news regarding Tripura. This is very concerning, and it is urged that peace is maintained at all costs.”
On Friday, stone-pelting was reported during rallies taken out by Muslim organisations to protest against incidents in Tripura at Amravati, Nanded, Malegaon, Washim and Yavatmal. Police have so far arrested 20 people and detained four others by registering 20 FIRs under various charges, including rioting, in connection with Friday’s incidents.
What happened in Amravati on Friday?
On Friday, over 8,000 people had gathered outside the office of the district collector. The aim was to submit a memorandum demanding action against the alleged atrocities against the Muslims in Tripura. However, when the people were leaving, incidents of violence took place at several locations between Cotton Market and Chitra Chowk.
One of the most disturbing videos showed Muslim children being part of the propaganda. In the video shared by a user, MVAgovt, a small kid with a skull cap holding a poster was seen asking a shopkeeper if he was going to close shop on Friday. The poster read, “Can you close your shop and business for the respect of Rasoolullah?”
Furthermore, several videos and photos emerged on social media showing how the Muslim mob pelted stones targeting specifically shops owned by Hindus in the city. In one of the videos, a Muslim mob was heard raising slogans of ‘Allah Hu Akbar’ outside a shop named Mathura Bhojanalay owned by a Hindu. Twitter user Karan Sharma shared the video that had two parts.
वहां @akshaykumar की सूर्यवंशी में हिंदुओं को धर्मनिरपेक्षता का ज्ञान दिया गया यहां आज अमरावती में विशेष समुदाय के लोगो ने तिरंगा हाथ मे थामे दुकानों में तोड़फोड़ कर लूटी गयी । कपड़ों और नारों से पहचाना जा सकता हैं कि लोग कौन हैं । धन्य हो महाराष्ट्र सरकार । pic.twitter.com/ycJbztyrc1— Karan Sharma (@iKaranSharma99) November 12, 2021
In the first part, the mob was seen raising slogans. In the second part, visuals of a Kiryana shop were visible. The owner of the shop was heard saying that around 20 rioters had entered the shop. Another man in the video claimed that the mob assaulted children as well.
Another video shared by the same user showed a mob moving in a market, allegedly closing down and vandalising shops owned by Hindus. The background voice in the video said that the shop they were allegedly attacking was owned by one Gupta. The Police were nowhere seen in the video.
Some photographs were also shared in which damaged vehicles and injured Hindus were seen.
A video was shared by one Harshraj Batham that showed a few men walking with swords. He wrote, “This is how Muslim mob is going for attacking Hindus in Maharashtra’s Amravati.”
The other videos showed similar visuals.
Aaj dooahr Maharashtra ke Amravati shehar me muk morcha ke naam par visheh smudaay, shanti dooto dwaara ki gayi tod fod, lootpaat maarpit shehar me dehshat ka mahol Hinduo ko banaya gaya nishana.. pic.twitter.com/RdG03AIEiY— Akash [email protected] (@AKASH_GUPTA1550) November 12, 2021
I was at the ground zero last night in amravati where the riot took place. Only hindu shops were vandalized by the miscreants.— Aadinath Patwardhan (@AdityaPatward12) November 13, 2021
Mathura bhojanalay. #Maharashtra #MaharashtraRiots pic.twitter.com/gJ0mbAOKh2
Muslim terror organisation Reza Academy who are known to fund Islamic terror and attacking Hindus have now started #MaharastraRiots— Arun Pudur (@arunpudur) November 13, 2021
Muslims from Namuna galli, #Amravati started pelting stones & attacking Hindus.
Devendra Fadnavis, opposition leader, called it unfortunate and wrote that rallies in Maharashtra were organised for an incident that never occurred in Tripura. He said, “The Tripura government and local Police have clarified that no religious place of a minority community was burned down. They have issued pictures of the same as well. I appeal to both the communities to observe restraint.” He also urged political leaders to restrain from giving any inflammatory statements.