The Punjab government restored the internet services in Patiala Saturday evening following an improvement in the situation that remained tense after the Friday afternoon clash between the Shiv Sena (Bal Thackeray) members and the supporters of Khalistan over the issue of taking out an anti-Khalistan march by the former, leaving four persons hurt.
The local administration had clamped curfew from Friday evening till 6 am Saturday and also suspended mobile internet services and SMS services from 9.30 am to 6 pm. However, the home department revised its earlier order and restored the same after 4 pm instead of 6 pm. The step was taken in order to check the spread of rumours following the clash.
Most of the shops in Patiala remained shut on the "bandh" call given by various Hindu groups even as they also called off a protest rally against Friday's violence after police assured that those behind violence would be apprehended within 48 hours.
Meanwhile, Harish Singla, an accused of instigating violence in Patiala, who was arrested on Friday was sent to police remand for two days.
Chief minister Bhagwant Mann following the clashes transferred the Inspector General of Police (IG), Senior Superintendent of Police (SSP) and Superintendent of Police (SP) of Patiala with immediate effect replacing them with Mukhwinder Singh Chinna (IG), Deepak Parik (SSP) and Wazir Singh (SP).
It may be recalled that all the opposition parties namely Congress, Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) and BJP slammed the police and the ruling Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) government for the incident.
Punjab BJP president Ashwani Sharma held that the incident exposed the utter failure of the state police and intelligence agencies as the Shiv Sena members had been protesting against the call given by banned "Sikhs for Justice" organisation convener Gurpatwant Pannu to mark the foundation day of Khalistan on April 29.
Congress leader Partap Singh Bajwa also came down heavily on the ruling government and chief minister Bhagwant Mann, calling the incident as "complete anarchy in the state."