Rioters reportedly joined by Shiva devotees

Ghaziabad: Three persons were killed and 30 injured as members of two communities traded gunfire and indulged in arson at Loni, about 24 kms from Delhi, on Thursday night over construction of a house in a locality dominated by the minority community.

A mob pelted stones and indulged in arson, damaging four vehicles including three UP roadways buses and setting a police jeep on fire, SSP Deepak Ratan said.

The rioters, who were joined by Shiva devotees going to Hardwar, blocked traffic for over two hours in the area. The warring groups opened fire at each other leaving three persons dead and six with bullet wounds, Ratan said. -- PTI

Staff Reporter adds:

The situation went out of hand around 7 p.m. when two groups, one favouring construction and the other against it, clashed. Supporters from both sides joined in and started pelting stones. They allegedly burnt down the Nithora police post and set ablaze some vehicles. The police cordoned off the area in an attempt to prevent the violence from spreading. Despite deployment of extra force in the area, the situation remained tense on Thursday night.

Situation tense

The injured were admitted to the Guru Teg Bahadur hospital. Additional police personnel were deployed in the area where the situation is tense but under control, the SSP said.