13 killed, 150 hurt as rioters attack mosques & torch houses in Delhi
NEW DELHI (Reuters) – At least 13 people were killed and around 150 injured in attacks on the mosques as well as houses and shops owned by Muslims in New Delhi, a police official told Reuters on Tuesday.
“Ten persons, including one head constable of Delhi police, have died,” said Anil Mittal, a police officer, adding around 150 persons were injured in the violence on Monday.
The violence erupted in a northeastern district of the city between thousands of people demonstrating for and against the new citizenship law. Police used tear gas and smoke grenades, but struggled to disperse the stone-throwing crowds that tore down metal barricades and set vehicles and a petrol pump alight.
“Some of the people brought in had gunshot wounds,” said Dr Rajesh Kalra, additional medical superintendent at the Guru Teg Bahadur Hospital in New Delhi.
Tensions in parts of the city remained high on Tuesday with schools remaining shut in some areas amid news reports of fresh clashes. At least five metro stations in the city were closed.
A fire department official told Reuters that its teams were responding to reports of at least eight separate cases of arson on Tuesday, linked to fresh protests in the city. One department vehicle was also torched by protesters on Monday, and a small number of firemen were injured in the violence, he added.
The violence on Monday began just as US President Donald Trump began his maiden visit to India. Trump and Prime Minister Narendra Modi are set to meet for talks on Tuesday at a venue located a few miles away from where the clashes occurred.
At a press conference early on Tuesday, Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal appealed for people to maintain peace, “Whatever problems people have can be resolved peacefully,” he said. “Violence will not help find a solution.”
India’s capital has been a hotbed of protests against the new Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA), which eases the path of non-Muslims from three neighbouring Muslim-dominated countries to gain Indian citizenship.
This has led to accusations that Modi and his Hindu nationalist Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) are undermining India’s secular traditions. The BJP denies any bias against India’s more than 180 million-strong Muslim minority, but objectors have been holding protests and camping out in parts of New Delhi for two months.