The police opened fire in the air to disperse a violent mob that assembled at Mattul near Pazhayangadi here on Saturday morning demanding release of a youth arrested in connection with an attack on a police team on Friday night. The trouble started when police personnel from Pazhayangadi police station led by sub-inspector G. Anoop reached Mattul in the morning to arrest P.V. Noushad (31) who was allegedly involved in the attack.

When the police nabbed him, a mob of around 30 people, including women, stopped the police vehicle demanding his release. The police said the mob refused to disperse despite warnings. Mr. Anoop then opened a single round of fire in the air using his service revolver.

A large posse of police personnel were deployed at the police station to avert any protest against the arrest. The police said a jeep had been damaged in the attack at Mattul on Friday night. The police had reached the spot following a phone call informing of illegal sand-mining. The windscreen of the jeep was smashed. Noushad was among those who attacked the police, they said.