Police Identify 5 Men Who Attacked Christian Gathering In Maharashtra

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Armed men threw stones on people attending the prayer. (Representational)

Mumbai:

Maharashtra police on Thursday identified five members of a group that had attacked a congregation at prayer in Kolhapur district, ahead of Christmas.

"We have identified at least five members of the group with the help of CCTV footage. We have their names, addresses and we are looking for them," Superintendent of Police, Kolhapur, Abhinav Deshmukh, told news agency PTI. The group members are from Belgaum city and rural Karnataka, he added.

Police formed several teams, including one from the crime branch, to investigate the case. They have also sought help from Karnataka police.

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A group of around 40 people was attacked by 15 men armed with swords, iron rods and glass bottles. They also threw stones at those attending the prayer. Some women, who were part of the prayer meet, forced the attackers to back off by throwing chilly powder on them, an official said.

A Christian delegation had met police and the resident district collector, demanding security.

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