Fresh round of clashes erupted amid heightened tension in Leicester since India-Pakistan cricket match on August 28.
Muslim and Hindu community leaders have called for calm after young men clashed with each other on Saturday in Leicester, a city in central UK.
Tensions remained high on Sunday with the police saying it have increased its presence on the streets and started snap checks to stop youngsters from getting into more further confrontation.
People took to social media on Saturday evening sharing footage and pictures of a mob chanting "Jai Shree Ram" (Victory to Lord Rama) slogans as it marched through Belgrave Road, the centre of the Asian community in the city. TRT World wasn't able to independently authenticate the footage.
Hindu RW march in #Leicester, UK a Muslim majority area shouting Jai Sri Ram! Violence broke out. Maybe come live in Uttar Pradesh if you’re so invested. Why sully a foreign country with your pointless hate. #Leicester pic.twitter.com/Lq5Kzc6EMa— Sangita (@Sanginamby) September 18, 2022
In the videos shared on social media, dozens of masked men can be seen marching as police officers try to keep the them in line.
Some people in the midst of a mob gathered on Belgrave Road hurled glass bottles at Muslim counter-protesters, Anadolu Agency reported.
Muslim leaders have asked community members to stop sharing unverified videos and news on social media, which can create more confusion.
17th September 2022— FMO (@FMO_Leics) September 17, 2022
We have seen videos of breakouts of violence and disturbances of the peace around the Green Lane Road area.
We plea to all the community is please stay away and do not get involved. This is simple provocation and we need to let the police deal with it.
A large number of police were dispatched to increase security, authorities said.
"Violence and disorder will not be tolerated in our city. Dispersal and stop and search powers are in place and are being used. We are calling for calm and telling everyone to return home. Only share information that has been checked and is true," the police department said in a tweet.
The police also dispelled a rumour circulating on social media that a mosque had been attacked.
Violence and disorder will not be tolerated in our city. Dispersal and stop and search powers are in place and are being used. We are calling for calm and telling everyone to return home. Only share information that has been checked and is true.— Leicestershire Police (@leicspolice) September 17, 2022
In a later statement, the police announced that the situation in the east of Leicester was under control, that people were dispersed, and investigations were underway.
A cricket passion goes wild
Tensions have been high since August 28 when India defeated Pakistan in a cricket match during the Asia Cup. The match was played in the UAE, but the bitterness of the two arch rivals played out on the streets of Leicester when Indian supporters took to streets chanting anti-Pakistan slogans.
Since India’s Prime Minister Narendra Modi was reelected for another term in 2019, the supporters of his ruling far-right Hindu nationalist Bharatiya Janata Party have galvanised supporters in the diaspora.