Lucknow: Riot, arson, looting and attacks on police and properties belonging to Muslims were witnessed in Mainpuri - considered as the pocket borough of former Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Mulayam Singh Yadav after the Samajwadi Party Supremo vowed to expose the "leaders" involved in the lynching of a 50-year-old Muslm in Dadri, Greater Noida not far from New Delhi, the Indian capital.
The police has so far arrested 21 people who were allegedly involved in the violence and incting trouble.
The violence broke out in the city after some persons spread rumours of cow slaughter in Karhal area with an intention to trigger communal tension in the town, an official spokesman said on Saturday.
Following the rumours, a mob gathered and started beating Shafeeque Ahmed and Mohammad Rafeeque with lathis. The mob also attacked the police which tried to rescue the two youths.
People also set police jeeps on fire and damaged several other vehicles and shops as they were agitated over rumours of cow slaughter in the village, police said.
It was alleged that a cow, which was grazing in a field near the village, was whisked away for slaughter and its skin was being removed in a house when some villagers barged in, the police said.
The post-mortem report, however, found that the cow had died due to an ailment, he said. Police also said that the two youths beaten by the mob had license to dump dead animal.
Heavy police reinforcements were rushed to the area and senior district officials were monitoring the situation, a senior official told IANS.
The violence in Mainpuri comes close on the heels of the Dadri lynching incident in which a man was killed over rumours of alleged beef consumption.
On September 29, Mohammad Akhlaq was dragged out of his home and stoned to death on a village street after a public announcement from the local temple that the family had slaughtered a calf and eaten its meat.
While Aqlakh, father of Corporal Sartaj who is working with the Indian Air Force, died, his 22-year-old son Danish is battling for life at a hospital following two brain surgeries.
Few days fater the incident stirred nationwide outrage and also highlighted by the international media, Mulayam Sungh Yadav vowed to bring to book the people who were involved in the crime.
If the local media reports are to be believed, Mulayam Singh had also hinted at the involvement of at least three leaders of the party which is at the helm of affairs at the centre and vowed to expose them.
The Mainpuri violence is seen as a warning to Mulayam Singh Yadav.