Tension escalated near the Charminar in the early hours of Thursday after a group of people objected to a tin-roofed shed structure being constructed at the Bhagya Laxmi temple adjacent to the historic monument.

The temple authorities took up construction activity late Wednesday and had erected scaffoldings on which tin sheets were being laid. However, people in the locality saw it as an attempt to expand the temple area. As news spread, a few hundred people gathered near the temple and raised protests.

Apprehending that the situation could slip out of control, police contingents quickly moved in and placed barricades around the temple.

MIM legislators Ahmed Pasha Quadri and Ahmed Balala rushed to the spot and discussed the issue with South Zone DCP Akun Sabharwal besides lodging a complaint. They left the place after the police officers assured them that the work would be stopped.

However, after noticing that the work was being resumed again, Mr. Quadri came back and staged a protest in front of the temple demanding that the police immediately remove the wooden structure put up at the spot.

The situation seemed to go out of control after devotees began to pour in to the temple around 5 a.m. The protest was then called off after senior police officials gave a written assurance that no new construction activity would be allowed at the temple.

However, tension began to build up again after a few people resumed work on the structure after conducting puja at the temple early Thursday morning. Additional Commissioner of Police Amit Garg along with a team of police personnel moved in, took a few people into preventive custody and shifted them to an undisclosed location. The police have also posted additional teams at Gulzar Houz, Moosa Bowli and Nagulchinta junction to avoid any untoward incident.

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