Social media triggered communal tension I Curfew imposed in Shillong

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Social media triggered communal tension

Guwahati:

Social media triggered communal tension

Rumors started circulating yesterday via social media about the death of a tribal man led to communal tension in Shillong on Thursday evening, forcing the authorities to clamp curfew in parts of the city.

Superintendent of Police (City) Steve Rynjah said a clash broke out between drivers of state transport buses and residents of Them Iew Mawlong locality, also known as Sweeper’s Lane, on Thursday afternoon.

Social media triggered communal tension

An incident of eve-teasing allegedly involving a conductor of one of the buses and a girl of the locality was said to be the trigger of the clash between tribal people and Dalits. Some claimed the fight started after women of the locality objected to the parking of a bus that blocked the way to a water collection point.

In that scuffle, a tribal boy got injured in the bus.

“But a rumour that a local person had died during the incident went viral on social media, following which scores of people marched to Sweeper’s lane. We had to use tear gas to disperse the angry crowd and bring the situation under control,” Mr. Rynjah said.

Locals said despite the presence of police, tension prevailed till 2 am on Friday as waves of people tried to force their way to the locality.

The authorities of East Khasi Hills district, under which Shillong falls, later imposed curfew in 14 localities around Sweeper’s Lane. These include Iewduh or Bara Bazaar, the commercial hub of the city.

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