Tuesday’s police crackdown on the Patel supporters followed by the brief detention of their leader, Hardik Patel prompted the angry protesters to go on a rampage causing widespread damage to public properties.
Reports of arson and torching of vehicles were reported from several cities in Gujarat on Tuesday evening. Rapidly deteriorating law and order prompted the state government to impose curfew in Surat, Mehsana, Ahmedabad and Rajkot.
A visibly shaken chief minister, Anandiben Patel had to appear on TV channels urging the protesters to maintain peace.
By morning, the magnitude of damage and destruction was quite clear even though the government tried to play down its significance.
More than a 100 buses were set on fire overnight and property damaged in the violence in Ahmedabad, Surat and Mehsana cities and the towns of Unjha and Visnagar.
Internet services were down in all the affected areas, ostensibly to stop the spread of unconfirmed reports of violence.
The developments on Wednesday prompted Prime Minister to issue a video statement asking protesters to give up violence as it didn’t ‘help’ anyone.
But by Wednesday evening, the number of deaths had risen to eight. We also learnt that those who were killed in the violence also included a policeman.
Schools and colleges were closed in all the affected cities on Wednesday and they will remain closed even on Thursday. Army has been deployed in Rajkot, Mehsana, Surat and Ahmedabad.
Here are some visuals of death, damage and destruction in Gujarat.
As many as 100 buses were set on fire in Surat, Mehsana and Ahmedabad. Vehicles set on fire also include motorbikes and vans
This is the scene from Tuesday evening when the alleged brutalities by Gujarat police prompted Patel supporters to go on a rampage.
Destruction the morning after
More evidence what the current violence has done to Gujarat
Complete breakdown of law and order meant Army had to be called in to take control of situation
Army jawans on duty in Ahmedabad