Shoot-at-sight orders in KandhmalAugust 27th, 2008 - 3:44 pm ICT by ANI
Bhubaneswar, Aug 27 (ANI): Shoot-at-sight orders have been issued in eight places in Kandhmal district of Orissa in the wake of Vishwa Hindu Parishads (VHP) protest against the killing of its leader Swami Lakshmanananda Saraswati.
Curfew continues in Kandhmal.
The death toll from the violence in the state has risen to nine and the situation is threatening to spiral out of control with mobs seeking revenge for the killings of the VHP leader and four of his disciples.
Thousands of people in communally-sensitive Kandhmal district moved into forests for safety.
At least four people were killed in a clash between members of Hindu and Christian communities at Barakhama village in Kandhmal on Tuesday.
Earlier, the Centre dispatched three companies of Rapid Action Force (RAF) on the request of the State Government. These units have already taken their position in violence-hit areas, while schools, colleges and educational institutions remained closed.
On Monday, VHP activists, while carrying out a procession along with the body of the slain VHP leader, defied curfew and damaged two churches, prayer houses and over ten vehicles.
Reports said that protesters burnt alive a 20-year-old woman in an orphanage at Khuntpalli village in Bargarh district. In Kandhamal district, where suspected Maoists gunned down the Swami and four of his disciples on Saturday night, a villager was burnt to death.
Many churches, prayer houses and other Christian institutions were attacked in Kandhamal, Bargarh, Koraput, Rayagada, Gajapati, Boudh, Sundargarh and Jajpur districts. At least two prayer houses were damaged in the capital city. (ANI)