Rajasthan 'love jihad' case: 12 policemen injured, 175 people arrested after mob violence; section 144 to continue in Udaipur, Rajsamand

Over 175 people were arrested and 12 policemen were injured in a demonstration as mobs defied prohibitory orders in Udaipur following the murder of a Muslim migrant labourer from West Bengal, according to reports. Section 144, which was issued as a precautionary measure, will continue in both Rajsamand and Udaipur.

The labourer, identified as Mohammed Afrazul, was burnt alive last week. The accused, who was later arrested, recorded himself beating the victim and later setting him on fire.

The accused, identified as Shabhu Lal Raigar, has called his action 'a war against love jihad' The Indian Express reported.

Following the murder, protests broke out demanding the death penalty for Raigar and the protesters also shouted slogans against right-wing groups. When the protest videos went viral, the right-wing reportedly decided to hold their own demonstration.

Police chasing activists during the protest rally. PTI

Police chasing activists during the protest rally. PTI

News18 reported that in an attempt to control the unruly mob, police had to lathicharge the protesters and both sides got injured in the clash that followed. The protests took place near Court Circle in Udaipur around 5 pm.

Sudhir Joshi, the additional superintendent of police (city), was among those injured in the clash, the police said. They also claimed that at least 20 activists were also detained, the report added.

The mob forcibly closed down shops, created a ruckus on roads and pelted stones in the city, forcing authorities to press additional forces into service on Thursday, The Times of India reported. Police said tension started about 1.30 pm and continued until late evening.

Section 144 imposed

A 24-hour ban on internet services was imposed in Udaipur after several inflammatory videos were circulated in the district, according to India Today. During a protest rally, speeches against Prime Minister Narendra Modi and certain religious and social organisations were made and after a message about a response started circulating, district administration imposed Section 144 in a bid to maintain communal harmony, the report added.

The district magistrate had said that during the prohibition, there would be restrictions on conducting collective events and planning of dharna demonstration, rallies and speeches. Strict legal action will be taken against the infringers, ANI reported.

Action will be taken against offenders who send hate messages, images or videos on social media that affect communal harmony, the ANI report added.

Meanwhile, police investigations have ruled out 'love jihad' as being the reason Afrazul was killed. "The accused, Shabhu Lal Raigar, said that he committed the crime over 'love jihad', but it has not been established so far that any such theory was behind the killing of the labourer," inspector general of police, Udaipur, Anand Srivastava said.

The police is interrogating Raigar to ascertain the motive, the officer said.

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Updated Date: Dec 15, 2017 13:01:35 IST

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