Violence in Dharmasthala in Karnataka as police fire on children playing cricket

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Dharmasthala (Karnataka), May 2 (ANI): Violence gripped Dharmasthala temple area of Karnataka after a Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) personnel opened fire on residents that claimed one life.

About 100 CRPF personnel belonging to Andhra Pradesh were on poll duty in Karnataka and had gone to Dharmasthala to visit the temple.

Eyewitnesses said that they had parked their bus in open ground where children were playing cricket, which led to a verbal duel between them.

One of the security personnel then opened fire killing a temple staffer identified as Aithappa.

"In the Dharmasthala temple premises, there was an altercation between the Andhra Pradesh special police, who were on their way to Mangalore after the election duty from Udupi, and the residents. The altercation snowballed into the incident. There was stone pelting. It is alleged from the residents and in retaliation the police opened fire and in which one person was shot in the chest and lost his life on way to the hospital," said Subhramaniam Ashwariya Rao, Superintendent of Police, Dharamsthala.

The incident angered thousands of villagers who in turn smashed window panes and set afire a police vehicle, as per reports.

About 1000 agitated residents surrounded the bus of security personnel and pelted stones.

Police in turn dispersed the mob by baton charging. Many were injured, as per eyewitnesses. (ANI)

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