A youth's attempt to rape a minor girl sparked violent protests in Andhra Pradesh's Guntur town on Tuesday night, police said on Wednesday.
Tension prevailed in the old Guntur town after a mob attacked a police station, demanding that the accused be handed over to them. The mob also damaged police vehicles and set fire to some two-wheelers.
Police caned the mob and fired in the air to bring the situation under control. As a precaution, police imposed orders banning assembly of five or more persons.
The incident occurred in Balajinagar area when the youth, 20-year-old Madhu, tried to rape the 10-year-old girl when she was alone in her house. When the girl came out of the house crying, the locals caught hold of the youth and thrashed him. The accused ran to the nearest police stations and surrendered.
Meanwhile, the girl's parents and other relatives gathered outside the police station, demanding that the accused be handed over to them.
As the number of protestors swelled, police called additional force. The mob then tried to barge into the police station. When the police resisted, they pelted stones, injuring about 20 police personnel.
The window glasses of the police station, police vehicles and fire engine were smashed. The mob also set fire to some two-wheelers.
Police then used canes and fired in the air to bring the situation under control.
A police officer said a case was booked against the accused on a complaint by the girl's parents.
Police have also registered a case against those who resorted to violence outside the police station.
This is the latest in a series of incidents of rape of minor girls in Guntur district.
A 50-year-old rickshaw puller raped a nine-year-old girl in Dachepalli earlier this month. The incident sparked public outrage and violent protests. The accused later committed suicide.
Last week, another shocking incident came to light. Police arrested a local functionary of the ruling Telugu Desam Party (TDP) for repeatedly raping a 14-year-old girl. Investigations revealed that the victim was three-month pregnant.