Seven people were known to have been killed and 45 injured in New Delhi yesterday, when police opened fire on thousands of Hindus rioting over the slaughter of sacred cows.
Troops use teargas against rioters; dead rioter; rioters clash with police and troops; cars on fire.
EDITORS NOTE: Our Prod. No. 10647/66 serviced 5 Nov 66 refers.
Script is copyright Reuters Limited. All rights reserved
Background: Seven people were known to have been killed and 45 injured in New Delhi yesterday, when police opened fire on thousands of Hindus rioting over the slaughter of sacred cows.
It was another day of rioting in the Indian capital, led by Hindu Holy Men. Police opened fire and threw tear-gas grenades as the rioters tried to storm the Parliament building. Later a 48-hour curfew was imposed, and troops were moved into the city.
Agitation over the killing of cows -- which Hindus worship as a symbol of motherhood and fertility -- has mounted during the past few months, with Parliament being pressed on impose a nationwide ban on the slaughter of the animals. At present a total ban exists in only five of India's 16 states.
After yesterday's rioting, the Indian Prime Minister, Mrs Indira Gandhi, was under pressure to replace the Minister for Home Affairs, Mr. Gulzarilal Nanda, who is closely associated with Bharat Sadhu Samaj -- an association of Hindu Holy Men. He is blamed for not seeing that the rioters were dispersed. He was today reported to have resigned.
One of the buildings set on fire by the demonstrators was All India Radio.
During September demonstrations on the same issue crowds dispersed without incident after police barred their way to the Parliament building.