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PANCHKULA, India – Thousands of security forces have marched through a northern Indian town to maintain calm after supporters of a quasi-religious sect leader protested his rape conviction with violence that left at least 30 dead.
Authorities appealed to thousands of followers of the guru who calls himself Saint Dr. Gurmeet Ram Rahim Singh Ji Insaan to vacate his headquarters in Sirsa, a town in Haryana state, and go home.
After a court declared him guilty of rape Friday, mobs set fire to government buildings, vandalized bus stations and government vehicles and attacked police and TV journalists in Panchkula, 250 kilometers (155 miles) north of Sirsa.
Police used tear gas and water cannons and fired bullets to control the mobs.