Four policemen sustained minor injuries when a group of young namazis pelted stones soon after coming out of Mecca Masjid after the noon prayers in the Old City on Friday.
The group, mostly comprising youngsters and teenagers, attacked two civilians and damaged two vehicles, including a police patrolling vehicle.
Mild tension prevailed in some areas as rumours about the violence spread even as police teams were deployed at several places on account of the Babri Masjid demolition anniversary on Friday.
Police, however, reacted swiftly chasing away the youngsters. Security was strengthened at sensitive locations by positioning police teams to meet any eventuality, as protest rallies and demonstrations were organised by some organisations to mark the masjid demolition anniversary.
Mecca Masjid, Charminar and surrounding localities remained peaceful till the completion of noon prayers. While many namazis left the mosque, a group of youngsters suddenly rushed towards the Charminar bus stop raising slogans. They headed towards Moghalpura fire station lane and began pelting stones on the policemen. A goldsmith, Vijay Kumar, who tried to capture their pictures using his mobile phone, came under their attack and sustained bleeding wound on his head after being hit by a stone. He was rescued from the attackers by police.
The group also attacked two civilians riding bikes at Volta hotel and Victoria hotel. Another bike was damaged near Asra hospital. The mob later turned up at Ishrat Mahal road near Shahalibanda and targeted a four-wheeler breaking its windscreens. Policemen lathi-charged the youngsters and dispersed them.
Charminar MIM MLA Pasha Quadri lodged a complaint with the Moghalpura police alleging that Vijay Kumar, who was beaten up by the mob, wore a locket resembling a religious sign.
He urged the police to probe into Kumar’s antecedents and ascertain if he was responsible for the violent incidents. He charged that Kumar could have masterminded the violence and tried to blame Muslim youngsters. Meanwhile, the police took into custody 18 Darsgah-Jihad-O-Shahadat (DJS) activists led by its president Mohammed Abdul Majid when they tried to take out a rally from their office in Moghalpura.
They burnt an effigy of the Sangh Parivar and urged the government to rebuild Babri Masjid.