A minor road accident led to a communal clash in Gujarat's Vadodara city, with rioters throwing stones, vandalising a shrine and damaging some vehicles, police said on Monday adding that three persons were injured.
Police have so far arrested 19 for rioting after the incident that occurred late Sunday night and three others in connection with the road accident involving two-wheelers, officials said.
Three persons were injured in the clash, Additional Commissioner of Police Chirag Koradia told reporters.
A Karelibaug police station official said that the clash broke out following a road accident involving two-wheelers belonging to people from two communities in the city's Raopura locality.
The matter escalated and in no time people from two communities gathered and hurled stones at each other in the Karelibaug locality, neighbouring the Raopura area.
A mob vandalised the idol at a shrine located on the roadside, two autorickshaws and as many two-wheelers, the police official said.
Two separate FIRs were registered at Raopura and Karelibaug police stations for the accident and rioting, respectively, and a total of 22 persons arrested so far, Koradia said.
Various sections of the Indian Penal Code for rioting, unlawful assembly, holding deadly weapons, defiling the place of worship with intent to insult the religion of any class have been invoked in the Karelibaug FIR against a group of named and unidentified accused.
"All the 19 persons named in the Karelibaug FIR for rioting were arrested during the combing operation carried out last night. Efforts are on to nab the unidentified accused," Mr Koradia said.
Also, out of 8-10 accused against whom an FIR was lodged at the Raopura police station related to the road accident, three were caught, he said.
Security has been tightened in the area and the situation is under control now, he added.
"Two companies of the State Reserve Police (SRP) personnel have been deployed in sensitive areas and patrolling increased under all police stations. The situation is under control," he said.
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