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What is causing the unrest in Tripura?

Tripura, a state in north-eastern India, has been in turmoil for some months. Vandalism and violence had shaken the otherwise peaceful state. What caused the agitation among the masses of the state? Let us take a look at the sequence of actions in brief.


The cause of the turmoil in Bangladesh started on October 15th. Following a social media post in which a Quran was put at the feet of a Hindu deity, several Hindu temples and pandals were demolished. As expected, the post went viral. There were reports of religious violence and attacks against the Hindu minority of Bangladesh in the weeks that followed. 


 


Tripura is surrounded on three sides by Bangladesh, leaving the impact of the violence in Indian territory. Religious organizations such as the Vishwa Hindu Parishad (VHP) and Hindu Jagran Morcha (HJM) held rallies supporting the affected community in Bangladesh. A few of them ended in clashes with police organizations (after they were denied entry into areas with mixed populations), with law and order being the primary concern. This incident destroyed minority community shops, homes, and shrines. According to a report from the state capital, a CCTV camera at a mosque was allegedly smashed by a few notorious characters.


 


On October 26th, a rally was taken out by VHP in the Panisagar area of North Tripura, allegedly vandalizing a few houses and shops at Rowa Bazaar. On the same day, another rally allegedly vandalized a mosque at Chamtilla village. The same night, a large number of people gathered from the minority community near Churaibari. But before any incident may have happened, the local administration was able to disseminate the crowd through discussions. Later on, the state police-imposed Section 144 in Panisagar and Dharmanagar to avoid any future disturbances.


On the afternoon of October 29th, unidentified elements destroyed a local Kali temple, made up of mud walls at Kailashahar. The police station of the area reported that the incident didn't cause any tension between the Hindu and Muslim communities.


The BJP-led state government, on the other hand, has denied that there has been any communal violence in the state and has urged residents to keep calm. Sushanta Chowdhury, Minister of Culture and Information, has claimed that the police are investigating the incidents.


In response to the violence, Tripura police have booked 102 social media handles under the Unlawful Activities Prevention Act (UAPA) to prevent any "enmity between any religious groups." Rumours have been paving their way from both offline and online sources. In response to this, Tripura Police tweeted that "Certain persons by using fake social media IDs are spreading fake news/rumours on Tripura. It is informed that the law & order situation in the state is completely normal."


 


The Tripura High Court, on the other hand, has stepped in and ordered the administration to take action against the bogus social media posts. It praised the state government's efforts to maintain peace but suggested that the measures be expanded because the state government is responsible for the lives and livelihoods of the people who reside there.


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