Kishtwar clashes: As it happened

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Kishtwar, Aug 12: Since Friday, the communal violence between the Hindu and the Muslim communities have flared up in the Kishtwar district of Jammu and Kashmir, reportedly killing at least three people and injuring around 80 people.

How clashes began:

The clashes began when a group of people allegedly attacked on Kuleed Chowk near Parade Ground where they had gathered in the morning to offer Eid namaaz, in Kishtwar.

Kishtwar clashes

Hundreds of shops, houses and vehicles were reportedly gutted and an indefinite curfew has been imposed since the spread of violence. People from both communities reportedly pelted stones at each other and raised provocative slogans.

The Army contingents have been deployed and they conducted a flag-march in an order to restore the law and order situation and to bring normalcy in the tensed area of Kishtwar.

The aftermath:

Yesterday, the BJP's senior leader Arun Jaitley was detained at the J&K airport and he was denied permission to enter curfew-bound Kishtwar.

Due to escalating violence in Kishtwar, the Amarnath Yatra has also been indefinitely suspended.

Meanwhile, the Minister of State for Home, Sajad Kitchloo stepped down after a judicial inquiry was ordered by the state government into the matter.

Kitchloo's resignation was soon accepted by the state Governor NN Vohra. Kitchloo, who maintained his innocence said, "I want the truth to come conscience does not allow me to continue as a minister till probe ends."

He also said, "My conscience is clear, my electorate in Kishtwar vouch for my secular credentials and I am deeply hurt that some people have stooped so low as to accuse me of something I have not done, only for petty political gains."

The Political blame-game:

Amid the rising clashes, the blame-game of political parties has also started.

While questioning the Bharatiya Janata Party's (BJP) right to demand his resignation, Kitchloo asked, "Did Narendra Modi resign after the Gujarat riots?"

The leader of opposition in the Rajya Sabha, Arun Jaitley said that, "The violence in Kishtwar and adjoining areas involves the sovereignty and integrity of the country and should not be seen only as a clash between two communities."

While objecting to his detention, Jaitley hit out at the Omar Abdullah's government saying that the state of Jammu and Kashmir is not the 'private property' of any one family.

Jaitley also said India is not a "banana republic" where an indefinite order is issued banning a person from entering Jammu region under Section 144.

In a series of pot-shots, the Union Minister Farooq Abdullah defended his party's decision and lashed out at the BJP saying, "Nobody was allowed into Gujarat after the riots... it's not the property of Modi."

Even as the violence is intensifying, the central government, on Monday, insisted the situation is under 'control'.

Finally, arrests:

Three days after the clashes broke out, at least ten persons have been arrested including two policemen.

OneIndia News

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