An 18-year-old man was killed while over 27 were injured including 20 police officers after an argument ensued into violent clashes between police and a mob in Bihar's Munger during the immersion of Goddess Durga idols on the intervening night of Monday and Tuesday.
The incident took place following an argument between revellers participating in the Durga idol immersion ceremony and Kotwali police personnel, after which the police opened fire to control the mob, The Hindustan Times quoted an eyewitness.
The police initially used tear gas shells but they proved ineffective. A video surfacing on social media showed police lathi-charge on a group carrying a Durga idol and has sparked anger. A disturbing image of the man who died in violent clash emerged after the incident.
Speaking to the media, member of Durga Idol Immersion committee, Prakash Bhagat said that over 53 Durga idols were installed in Munger out of which 15 idols were taken by revellers for immersion in the Ganga at Deendayal Chowk.
The organisers allegedly took out a procession with DJs playing loud music close to midnight while heading for idol immersion. The violent clashes occured at around 11:50 pm when police officials allegedly beat four persons who were carrying idols on their shoulders and sparked off a protest with the people and organisers demanding action against the policemen.
According to the police, some 'anti-social elements' started throwing stones at the police during the procession in the evening. Reportedly the police retaliated with a lathi-charge, and also fired as the situation escalated. The police said some revellers also used firearms.
"During Durga puja immersion, some anti-social elements resorted to stone-pelting which left 20 policemen injured. After this someone from the crowd fired, leading to one death. The situation is under control," Lipi Singh, Superintendent of Police, Munger said.
"There were attempts to falsely accuse the police of beating up people. The situation is peaceful now. We are trying to identify the accused," he added.