BENGALURU, August 12:
At least three people died in clashes with police in the Indian city of Bengaluru overnight after a Facebook post offensive to Muslims sparked protests in which a police station was attacked, and a politician’s house and vehicles were torched.
Unable to quell protesters using batons and tear gas, besieged officers opened fire as they risked being overpowered during the violent unrest in a Muslim-dominated neighborhood, the southern city’s police chief told Reuters on Wednesday.
“Despite elders of the community trying to pacify the crowd, the mob burnt vehicles on the road, they attacked the police station,” Police Commissioner Kamal Pant said.
“The police had no escape and they had to resort to firing and three people died,” Pant said, adding that 110 people had been arrested for alleged vandalism and attacking the police.
A police official said an emergency law prohibiting gatherings had been imposed in Bengaluru, a city of 12 million people best known as India’s Silicon Valley.
Pant said the person responsible for the offensive post had been arrested. The post, which reportedly involved the Prophet Mohammed, has since been deleted. Facebook did not immediately comment on the issue.(Reuters)