A court in India convicted a quasi-religious leader of raping two female followers, sparking unrest in the northern town of Panchkula that has left at least 13 people dead.

Violence broke out following the Friday conviction of Gurmeet Ram Rahim Singh, 50, the flamboyant leader of the Dera Sacha Sauda religious sect. According to reports, police fired tear gas and water cannons as followers threw stones, attacked buses, journalists and media vans. Thousands of army, police and paramilitary units have been deployed and Indians are skittish about violence spreading to the capital, Delhi.

Ahead of the trial, Singh appealed to his supporters to not turn to violence. But officials have been bracing for large-scale unrest all week after an estimated 200,000 followers streamed into

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