Gujarat agitation: Mob turns violent after Hardik Patel’s detention
protests that started soon after detention of Hardik Patel on Saturday morning
in Surat city turned violent by evening. Stone pelting was reported in Kapodra
area of the city as mobs started gathering near Kapodra police station.
At all major cross
roads in Patidar dominated areas men and women started gathering by afternoon.
Initially, the crowd started reciting ‘Ramdhun’ while beating steel plates. Mob
gathering was reported in parts of Kapodra, Sarthana, Punagam and Varachha areas
of the city. The crowd demanded release of Hardik, who was detained by police
at starting point of Ekta Yatra in Varachha. Total 36 persons including Hardik
and his supporters were detained by police and kept in police custody at police
headquarters in Athwalines.
Patidar youth forced
shops in Yogi Chowk of Punagam to close down. Gradually, majority of the
markets in patidar dominated areas were closed. All the major market like
Chauta Bazaar and Bhagal were closed by evening fearing untoward incident.
The crowd demanding
Hardik’s release turned violent in evening in Kapodra area as they resorted to
stone pelting on police. The mobs pelted stones at Kapodra police station and
attempted to torch a vehicle that was carrying SRP jawans. Women gathered at
Kapodra police station damaged entry gate of the police station.
Police lobbed tear-gas
shells to disperse the crowd. The rioting mobs blocked all major cross roads in
Varachha and Kapodra area. They also blocked the flyovers to disconnect the
city from main entry points in city from National Highway 8.
Crowd gathered near
Kamrej blocked National Highway 8 near Tapi River bridge close to Surat city.
Around 4km long traffic jam was reported at the location.
Following detention of Patel
and his associates, authorities of Surat, Ahmedabad, Vadodara and Rajkot have
issued notifications suspending mobile internet services in the four cities to
preempt any untoward incident owing to rumour mongering.
Gujarat Police does not
seem to be taking chances with the law and order situation and immediately
instructed concerned authorities across the state to take a decision on
imposing ban on mobile internet services as per the situation in their
respective jurisdictional areas. It is also noteworthy that Gujarat Chief
Minister Anandiben Patel is in Surat district to attend a public function.
Gujarat DGP PC Thakur said,
“There is no blanket ban on mobile internet in the State. All the Police
Commissioners and offices of district Superintendents of Police have been asked
to take a decision on banning mobile internet service depending upon the
circumstances in their respective jurisdictions.”