Srinagar : Dozens of people were injured and more than eighteen vehicles damaged when sectarian violence broke out at a Shia dominated locality in the downtown area of Srinagar city, summer capital of Jammu and Kashmir, here this evening.
The sectarian violence, rare in the state of Jammu and Kashmir has created panic in the downtown area of the city, where police and para-military forces have been deployed in large number to control the situation.
Sources quoting eyewitnesses told News Agency of Kashmir that clash between Shiite and Sunnis sects broke out over the weekend when some unknown persons allegedly threw stones on a Muharram procession in Gojwara area of downtown Srinagar this evening.
The precisionists, they said, turned violent and went berserk damaging vehicles and looting shops, Ghulam Abbas, one of the eyewitnesses told NAK.
He said that within less than half an hour the violent mob set two buses on fire and damaged window panes of about sixteen other vehicles.
Sources said that when the things started getting out of control, large number of youth from Sunni sect also assembled in the locality and resorted to stone pelting on the mob, which was already on frenzy.
The ding dong battle continued for more than two hours leaving dozens of persons including some photojournalists injured.
Police and paramilitary personnel later swung into action and chased the violent mob. “However, damage till than was done as dozens of shops and vehicles were damaged in the violence”, another local resident said.
Divisional Commissioner Kashmir Mehboob Iqbal told NAK that reports of stone pelting were reported from the area but situation was immediately under control and additional deployment of police was made. “We have made additional deployment in the area to control the situation”, he added.
It was also learnt that army also staged a flag march in the locality, late this evening.