H/T Michael Laudahn:
HYDERABAD: Violence erupted once again in the Old City soon after the Friday prayers when hundreds of Muslim youths emerging out of Mecca Masjid attempted to break through the barricades set up by the police and made a vain attempt to proceed towards the ‘chilla’ located within the historic Charminar with the intention of offering prayers. Unable to do so, the youths resorted to stone pelting to which the police responded with lathicharge and teargas.
Within minutes, the unrest spread to other parts of Old City including Shalibanda, Yakutpura, Rein Bazaar and Gowlipura, from where incidents of stone-pelting were reported. In all, at least 5 people including security personnel were admitted to Osmania General Hospital with minor injuries while at least 10 vehicles were burnt by the protesters. Over 50 youths were detained by the police. Till late in the evening, sporadic incidents were reported from across Old City and the situation, though largely under control, continued to remain tense.
The Old City has been on the boil over the last fortnight over the repair work that was undertaken by the management of the Bhagyalakshmi temple adjoining Charminar and it culminated in the MIM withdrawing support to the UPA government at the Centre and the Congress government in the state on the charge that chief minister Kiran Kumar Reddy and his administration was openly siding with the Sangh Parivar and aiding the harassment of the minority community. After incidents of stone pelting between two communities in the Moghulpura area on Wednesday night, heavy security including increased personnel of the Rapid Action Force (RAF) was deployed for Friday in Old City, specifically in and around Charminar, but it could not prevent the outbreak of
As part of the security measures, the police had banned entry of devotees to Bhagyanagar temple at 11 am on Friday. By 12.30 pm, the devout started entering Mecca Masjid to offer prayers. In the meantime, perhaps anticipating trouble, senior cops deployed for duty began wearing the riot gear.
The trouble started after the completion of the Friday prayers when the devout started emerging out of Mecca Masjid around 1.15 pm, a little earlier than usual. On finding the path to Charminar heavily barricaded, the youths attempted to break through it but were prevented by the large police presence. Frustrated, the youths began stone pelting at the cops from all four sides of Charminar. The cops responded with lathicharge and then teargas and at least 50 teargas shells were fired till 4.30 pm to disperse the crowd.