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One killed in clash over Rajoana, curfew in Gurdaspur

Punjab,Crime/Disaster/Accident, Thu, 29 Mar 2012 IANS

Gurdaspur (Punjab), March 29 (IANS) Curfew was imposed here Thursday after one person was killed and another received bullet injuries when police fired to break up a clash between two communities over the fate of Balwant Singh Rajoana, on death row for the 1995 assassination of then chief minister Beant Singh.


Jaspal Singh, 18 was killed in this north Punjab town, about 200 km from the state capital Chandigarh, in the firing by police. Another person, who was shot in the chest, was being rushed to Amritsar, 50 km away, for treatment.



The clash between two groups, one from the Shiv Sena and another involving local Sikh organisations, took place in the presence of police over the hanging of the Babbar Khalsa International (BKI) terrorist, whose death sentence was stayed by the central government Wednesday.



Police sources said Shiv Sena members wanted to burn an effigy of Rajoana but the other group objected, triggering a clash. Police intervened with canes and then fired in the air. It also opened fire at the mob, resulting in the death of the teenager, police said.



A few people also received injuries.



Senior district officials were incommunicado after the incident, that led to tension in the area.



Punjab Congress chief Amarinder Singh condemned the incident and condoled the death of the youth.



'This government seems to be trapped between inaction and overreaction,' he remarked, pointing out that the Punjab government either takes no action or resorts to overreaction, thus complicating the matter further.



The All India Sikh Students Federation (AISSF) also sought a judicial probe into the clash and the the killing of the youth.



AISSF president Karnail Singh Peer Mohammad said while the government was trying to save Rajoana, other youth were getting killed in the state.



He sought a ban on the Shiv Sena in Punjab.


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