3 arrested for causing violence at Khalistan event in Australia

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Melbourne, March 30

Three men were arrested in relation to an alleged violence that broke out late in January when pro-Khalistani supporters clashed with Indians at Federation Square in Melbourne, Victoria Police said.

Police didn't specify whether the three were among the Khalistani backers, who incited violence during a referendum called by the banned Sikhs For Justice for the creation of an independent Sikh state.

The three include, a 23-year-old man from Kalkallo, who has been charged with affray, unlawful assault, and a 39 and a 36-year-old from Strathtulloh and Craigieburn, both charged with affray and violent disorder.

All those charged have been bailed to appear at the Melbourne Magistrates' Court on August 8.

The investigation remains ongoing and police are making enquiries to identify and apprehend any further alleged offenders from the day, the Victoria Police said in a statement.

The police, which used pepper spray to quell the protests had earlier arrested two men, aged 34 and 39, and issued a penalty notice for their riotous behaviour.

Police said they were in attendance at a Khalistan Referendum event at Federation Square on January 29, when fights broke out -- one at about 12.45 p.m. and the other around 4.30 p.m.

It's alleged flag poles were used by several men as weapons which caused physical injuries to multiple victims.

An Indian Tricolour was also burnt by a group of men at the event.

Two victims, one with a hand laceration to their head and another with a hand injury, were treated at the scene by paramedics. Several other victims sustained injuries and required medical treatment.

In both alleged incidents, police said they quickly responded to separate and disperse the crowd.

Continuing its massive crackdown against the Khalistanis, Victoria's police had earlier released images of six men, believed to have been involved in the late January violence.

--IANS

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