Special Correspondent

12 injured as CRPF personnel open fire

Security measures initiated in sensitive pockets

Night curfew remains in force in Kandhamal

BHUBANESWAR: The situation in Kurtamgarh gram panchayat under Tumudibandha Block of riot-hit Kandhamal district remained tense on Sunday even as large number security personnel were deployed in the area to maintain peace.

Two persons were killed and a CRPF jawan was injured at Kurtamgarh on Saturday afternoon when a mob clashed with the police while trying to attack the Christian families in the village.

The CRPF personnel on duty had opened fire after one of the members of the mob fired at them.

More than 12 persons who were part of the angry crowd were injured in the clash, but the police were able to prevent the mob from attacking the village.

Senior administration officials visited the area during the day to take stock of the situation as some members of the majority community were reportedly planning to continue their attack on the Christian families in the area.

Kurtamgarh village wore a deserted look as most of the Christian families had fled their homes after Saturday’s incident and taken shelter in other hamlets to escape from any attack at the hands of the people who were angry over the killing of Vishwa Hindu Parishad leader Swami Lakshmanananda.

As the whole area virtually turned into a fortress with heavy deployment of police to prevent any untoward incident, curfew remained in force in Tumudibandha and Baliguda area during the day.

Stray incidents

Meanwhile, reports of stray incidents of violence were reported from Raikia area of the district.

The authorities, however, claimed that law and order situation remained under control in the entire district barring Tumudibandha area where Swami Lakshmanananda and four others were killed on August 23.

With violence returning to Kandhamal, the authorities had initiated special security measures in the communally sensitive pockets.

Night curfew would remain in force in several towns of the district till the situation turned normal in the whole district, official sources said. Prohibitory order continues to remain in force in the entire district that witnessed widespread communal violence in the wake of the killing of the VHP leader.