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Bihar: Mob throws stone and damages Saraswati idol during immersion; sparks violent clashes, stone pelting and firing between two communities

ABP News quoted Saurabh Kumar, who was part of the Hindu procession saying that as many as 10 to 12 people who were part of the procession were injured in the violence.

On Friday, February 16, violent clashes broke out between two communities in the Lodipur village in Bihar’s Bhagalpur district. The incident took place after members of a particular community allegedly threw stones and damaged the idol of Goddess Saraswati which was being taken for immersion. 

This triggered an argument between members of both communities and within no time, the situation escalated and both sides started pelting stones at each other. Gunshots were also fired during the clashes. Though the police said that only one person was injured, ABP News quoted Saurabh Kumar, who was part of the Hindu procession saying that as many as 10 to 12 people who were part of the procession were injured in the violence.

Saurabh Kumar, who was also injured in the incident, confirmed that the Hindus were taking the Saraswati idol for immersion from the Sabalpur village in Bhagalpur to the banks of the Ganga river. When the Hindu procession reached the Lodipur village, the head of the Tabalpur village along with some of his goons suddenly started throwing stones at the idol and the Hindus who were participating in the procession. Kumar added that the Saraswati idol was broken and around 10 to 12 Hindus were severely injured as a result of the fierce stone pelting that came from the other side.

The situation quickly escalated as the two communities engaged in clashes using stones to attack each other. Many rounds of gunshots were also fired during the clash. Several shops in the area were vandalised.

As soon as the information reached the police City SP Raj, CT DSP Ajay Kumar Chaudhary, SDM Dhananjay Kumar along with police from six police stations and a large number of riot control forces quickly reached the scene and brought the situation under control.

The area has been converted into a police cantonment with additional forces being deployed. Though the atmosphere is still sensitive and tense the situation remains normal. the police are looking into the CCTV footage to identify the culprits.

Speaking about the incident, SDM Dhananjay Kumar said, “A clash broke out during the immersion of the Saraswati idol, in which one person was injured. Given the tense situation, an additional police force has been appointed. CCTV footage is being scrutinized and strict action will be taken against the culprits. People are urged not to fall for any kind of rumours that might be spread through social media.”

Meanwhile, a similar clash between two communities during the immersion of the Saraswati idol has also been reported from the Darbhanga district of Bihar. Speaking about the clash DM Rajeev Roshan said, “A clash broke out between two communities during idol immersion under Bahera police station. Officers reached the spot and brought the situation under control. The people involved in it were identified.” Investigation is being carried out. There has been stone pelting between the two communities. At present there is no report of any injury. Some people have been detained.”

Clashes during Saraswati idol immersion in Jharkhand

On Friday (16th February), violence erupted in the Nagri area in Ranchi of Jharkhand as stones were pelted during a Hindu procession when it reached near a religious place. The situation quickly escalated as the two communities engaged in clashes using stones and sticks to attack each other. Meanwhile, the police have denied unverified claims that shots were also fired, and imposed section 144 of the CrPC. More than half a dozen people from both sides were injured in the violence.

A similar incident also took place in Chongakhar village of Udaipura panchayat of Madhupur in Jharkhand where stones were pelted on an idol immersion procession after a clash erupted between two groups on Friday evening. Two dozen people were injured in this incident. As soon as the information was received, the police force of several police stations reached the spot and the situation was calmed down. The police administration provided security and conducted immersion rituals.

According to police, the devotees were going to Gondlitand Pond to immerse the idol taken on a cart from Chongakhar. During this time, some people standing near a religious place opposed to playing music. There was a dispute about this. Security forces are deployed in the village.

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