Ram Navami was celebrated on April 10, 2022, in various parts of India including Gujarat, but stone-pelting and subsequent violence between two communities have been reported in three districts of Gujarat – Himmatnagar, Khambhat and Dwarka. In Himmatnagar, 10 policemen including a superintendent of police were injured and one was killed in Khambhat. An additional police force has been deployed in the affected areas and the Minister of State for Home Affairs, Harsh Sanghvi called an emergency review meeting late last night.
During the procession on Ram Navami in Chhapariya area in Himmatnagar, communal clashes broke out which led the police to use tear gas shells to quell the violent situation. Later on, Sabarkatha District Magistrate Hitesh Koya has imposed section 144 – curfew in five areas of Himmatnagar.
The situation became so uncontrollable that the district police had sought the help of paramilitary forces. According to the information received, the situation was aggravated after the stones were pelted at the devotees present in the Ram Navami procession. Also, vehicles were also badly damaged in the communal clash.
The district police had reached the area in time but they were too attacked by the stones, injuring over 10 policemen. Looking at the course of events and how the clash broke out, the police officials believe that the attack was ‘intentional’ and ‘planned’ as they found that the stones were already present on the terraces of the houses in the area.
More than 15 people have been arrested in connection with the incident. The situation in Himmatnagar is under control and a search operation is underway along with five SRP forces on a standby mode.
The injured policemen are currently undergoing treatment and the department is investigating the incident as they look for more clues.