Power cuts spark violence in Uttar Pradesh town

September 18th, 2008 - 5:58 pm ICT by IANS  

Rampur, Sep 18 (IANS) Fed up with frequent power cuts, hundreds of people attacked a power station, damaged vehicles and ransacked shops in this Uttar Pradesh town, the police said Thursday.The violence Wednesday night also led to the blockade of the national highway linking Lucknow and New Delhi. The protesters burnt photographs of Chief Minister Mayawati.

The protesters attacked vehicles, including a large number of government buses. Many bus passengers were injured.

Shops were ransacked and carts overturned. An ATM of a nationalised bank was also damaged. A doctor’s clinic was also ransacked.

As news of the protests spread, people in other parts of the town marched towards the Nawab Gate Power House. The office of the hydel department was ransacked. But the employees of the power station slipped away.

Mohammad Azam Khan, a former minister in the Mulayam Singh government, had warned a few days back that the city’s residents would protest if the declared schedule of power cuts was not strictly adhered to during Ramzan.

Superintendent of Police Veer Bahadur Singh said nine people have been arrested on charges of rioting.

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