Several vehicles were damaged in communal clashes that broke out in parts of Belagavi on Wednesday night. No casualties were reported.
Police identified two groups of people as the source of the violence, as stones were pelted in Khadak Galli, Jalagar Galli, Ghee Galli and Khanjar Galli villages in the district.
Assistant Commissioner of Police (ACP) Shankar Marihal and three constables were among the people injured in the stone pelting incidents.
Krishna Bhat, Commissioner of Police, Belagavi, said that the clashes appeared to be communal.
A few citizens had met the Commissioner and alleged that some people came and tore up posters of Tipu Sultan leading to the violent clashes.
‚ÄúIt appears to be communal and we have taken around 20 people into custody. The enquiries have begun now,‚ÄĚ said the Commissioner.
Police are on high alert as the winter session of the state legislature is under progress in Belagavi.
As news of the communal clashes spread on Wednesday, many journalists and politicians were left confused as they were returning to the hotels they were staying in. ‚ÄúYesterday, we responded as soon as the disturbances started. We had to used tear gas to disperse the mob,‚ÄĚ Bhat added.
The Commissioner confirmed that the indiscriminate stone-pelting was quashed within half-an-hour with the help of additional police forces that had arrived in the town for the Assembly session. ‚ÄúRegular police patrolling is being done in the sensitive areas. The situation is under control,‚ÄĚ said Bhat.
The clashes began at Khadak Galli and spread to Chavat Galli and Bhadakal Galli. The areas were described as ‚Äėsensitive‚Äô by police officials due to its history of communal clashes.
The violence triggered memories of 2015 when the district witnessed a series of communal clashes following the death of renowned rationalist and research scholar MM Kalburgi.