Murder of Hindu man sparks killing of three Muslims

The burnt-out remains of vehicles, set on fire by a rioting mob, are seen in front of a charred house at Sareya village in Muzaffarpur district of India's northern Bihar state on January 19, 2015.

Story highlights

  • Three Muslims killed in attacks following the murder of a Hindu man in India's Bihar state
  • Victim's father claims his son was abducted for relationship with Muslim woman, police say
  • India's Muslim and Hindu communities have a history of violent clashes

(CNN)Two Muslims were burnt alive and another beaten to death in eastern India following the murder of a Hindu man.

Muslim-owned houses in a village in Bihar state's Muzaffarpur district were attacked and set on fire Sunday after the body of a Hindu man, reported missing since January 11, was discovered in a field, police spokesman Gupteshwar Pandey told CNN.
    The victim's father claimed his son was abducted for an apparent relationship with a Muslim woman, Pandey said.
    At least 14 arrests have been made so far, Pandey said.
    Muslims make up almost 13% of India's 1.2 billion mainly Hindu population.
    But the two communities have a history of violent -- occasionally deadly -- clashes.
    In 2002, more than 50 people were killed in the western state of Gujarat after a train carrying Hindu pilgrims was set alight, allegedly by local Muslims. Eleven people were sentenced to death and 20 others were jailed for life for their roles in the attack, which sparked days of rioting across the region that left more than 1,000 people dead.
    In September 2013, more than 60 people -- most of them Muslim -- died during sectarian rioting in the Muzaffarnagar district of Uttar Pradesh state.