Hindu, Muslim mobs clash in Modi's heartland of Gujarat

Indian police fired tear gas to break up clashes between mobs.


Afp May 26, 2014
Indian police secure the site of clashes between two groups during which shops and vehicles were set alight in the Gomptipur area of Ahmedabad on late May 25, 2014. PHOTO: AFP

AHMEDABAD: Indian police fired tear gas to break up clashes between Hindu and Muslim mobs in Narendra Modi's heartland of Gujarat on the eve of his swearing in as prime minister, officials said Monday.

Angry crowds set fire to several shops and vehicles and pelted stones at each other during the clashes in western Gujarat state's main city of Ahmedabad on Sunday night, police and fire officials said.

Ahmedabad joint police commissioner Manoj Shashidhar said officers fired tear gas to halt the violence which left four people injured.

Shashidhar said an investigation was under way into the clashes which appear to have started when two cars from the different communities crashed in an accident during a marriage procession.

"The incident flared up following a petty argument between people of two communities on Sunday night in Gomtipur area of the city. The situation was immediately brought under control," Shashidhar told AFP.

The incident escalated when mobs set property on fire, Ahmedabad chief fire officer M.S Dastur told AFP.

"Some three shops, one mini-bus and a couple of two wheelers were burnt during the incident," Dastur said.

The clashes came as Hindu nationalist Modi, chief minister of Gujarat for 13 years, was set to be sworn as premier on Monday after a landslide victory at elections as head of the Bharatiya Janata Party.

Modi has pledged national unity as he attempts to revive the faltering economy, but he remains tainted by anti-Muslim riots on his watch in Gujarat in 2002 that left at least 1,000 people, mainly Muslims, dead.

Modi has denied wrongdoing and a court investigation found he has no case to answer.

But some members of religious minorities fear a rise in communal tensions under a Modi government and warn they will be sidelined at the expense of the Hindu majority.

COMMENTS (24)

Gurion | 7 years ago | Reply

@Rex Minor:

The great Hindu God Ram is simply expressing its gratitude to Narendra Modi and the people of Gujrat for freeing him from the schakles of the Baber forces.

Is that you Mr. Lala Gee?

Raj - USA | 7 years ago | Reply

@Rex Minor: @Vasan: Rex Minor has been saying that House of Saud controls India, Pakistan and USA. He calls Musharraf unpatriotic and refers him as "India Born". Similarly he blames the entire Pakistan's army as also unpatriotic. He says that Nawaz Sharif is selling out Pakistan's interests. He blames Afghanistan also. He says everything is written in the Scripts !!!!!!!!! He calls himself "citizen of foreign country" and tries to give an impression that he is an European National and non-muslim. He tries to cloud everything about him, his stance, origin and his faith. Pakistani's are laughing at him as much as Indians are.

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