Inspector General of police, law and order Sanjeev Singh while confirming the number of dead said three people died in police firing while five others died in clashes that have been occuring in Burhanpur since Friday, Oct 10. The communal tension began on Thursday night when some miscreants pelted stones at a religious procession passing through Gandhi Chowk area. The situation was, however, immediately brought under control after elders from the communities intervened. The police imposed prohibitory orders under Section 144 of the Criminal Procedure Code, barring the assembly of four or more people in the town.
Traders in Gandhi Chowk area on Friday, Oct 10 downed their shutters to protest the previous night's violence. But in the afternoon, a group of people damaged shops and set some of them ablaze.
Soon, members of the two communities started pelting stones at each other, injuring several people. Two houses were also torched in Lalbagh area even though curfew was in force, officials said.
"In Gandhi Chowk, at least eight shops were set ablaze by a mob. Curfew was imposed as firing in the air and lobbing tear gas shells failed to stop the violence," said Anil Kumar, Inspector-General of Police (Indore range).
"More than three dozen shops and half a dozen houses have been torched in different areas of the town," a witness said.