COMMUNAL tensions gripped Rajasthan Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot’s hometown Jodhpur hours before Eid on Tuesday, prompting the authorities to suspend mobile Internet services and impose a curfew in 10 police stations areas of the city. The Chief Minister has appealed to people to maintain peace and harmony. Meanwhile, the Jodhpur Deputy Commissioner of Police issued orders imposing a curfew till May 4 midnight besides suspending mobile Internet services to check the spread of rumours. The tensions broke out on Monday night after some miscreants replaced one community’s religious flag at Balmukund Bissa at the Jalori Gate intersection circle with that of another. People from the other community objected to this move, which led to stone pelting in which five policemen were injured. The situation was brought under control in the early hours on Tuesday with heavy deployment of police but the tensions escalated again in the morning after prayers at an Eidgah. Shops, vehicles and houses were pelted with stones near the Jalori gate area. Members of the minority community were installing Eid flags and they put up a flag on a roundabout alongside the statue of freedom fighter Balmukund Bissa. This ledtoa confrontation as members of the communityallegedthatasaffronflag, which they had put up there ahead of Parshuram Jayanti, hadgonemissing. The issue snowballed into stone-peltingandclashes,officialssaid. Police rushed to the spot to control the situation during which five policemen were injured,thepolice control room said. Police had to lob tear gas shells to disperse the mob. Mobile Internet services were suspended in the area to check the spread of rumours, the officials said. Gehlot in a tweet urged peopletomaintainpeaceand called the incident unfortunate. “While respecting the tradition of love and brotherhood of Jodhpur, Marwar, I make a touching appeal to all parties to maintain peace and cooperate in restoring law and order,” he said. The Chief Minister said, instructionshadbeenissued to the administration to maintain peace and order. Hesaid,leadersofallpolitical parties should ask their workers to maintain peace and they all should remain united. Gehlotalsochairedahighlevel meeting at the Chief Minister’sofficetoreviewthe situation.Heaskedministers RajendraYadavandSubhash Garg, and two officers to go to Jodhpur by helicopter. The CM directed officials to take stern action against those responsible for it. A criminal, irrespective of his religion, caste or class, must not be spared, the CM told officials. On the other hand, the BJP targeted the State Governmentoverthelawand order situation. Union Minister Gajendra Singh Shekhawat claimed thatpoliceareworkingunder pressure.