January 22, 2020

Signs of normality returning to violence-hit Bhadrak

first_imgLife in communal violence-hit Bhadrak town in Odisha is slowly limping back to normality with no incident of violence or arson reported during the past two days.Curfew was relaxed for four hours from 8 am to 12 noon on Sunday allowing people to arrange essential commodities. The administration, however, took no chance and extended curfew till 7 am on Monday. It hinted that there could be phased relaxation in the curfew. From a security point of view, educational institutions and government offices will remain closed on Monday.Security tightenedDeployment of security personnel was strengthened at vulnerable pockets of the town and frequency in patrolling was increased to ensure peace.“There has been no fresh violence reported from the town. Curfew was relaxed in the morning and people came out in large numbers to get essential household items. We are taking several confidence building measures,” said A. B. Ota, Revenue Divisional Commissioner (Central).“The administration is not in a hurry to convene peace committee meeting. We are waiting for return of complete peace. We will soon take a call on the issue,” Mr. Ota said.Soon after announcement of relaxation in curfew was made, people rushed out to purchase milk, bread and vegetables which were available at a few places. Traders in Kacheri Bazar came out to check if their property was safe. Tension was palpable in Chandan Bazar, where both communities have a sizeable population. “We want to forget the violence and mistrust between the communities. But what we want from the administration is prompt response from security establishments during time of emergency. Our repeated calls to police stations had gone unanswered on Friday,” said Haji Seikh Abdul Salam, president of Charampa Minority Forum.Social networking sitesMeanwhile, cyber cell of the Crime Branch of the State Police has begun investigation into circulation of rumour through social media. As a precautionary measure, three social networking sites — Facebook, Twitter and WhatsApp — have been blocked at Bhadrak and surrounding areas for 48 hours from Sunday evening. Besides, toll free number 1077 and helpline number 06784-251881 have been issued for distress calls.last_img

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