The Bengaluru violence was subsided and the city of Bengaluru is besieged by the armed forces and section 144 has been imposed till 6 PM on 15 August. All this happened to contain the violence that erupted in the city over a Facebook post. On Tuesday evening, a group of people gathered outside the DJ halli police station. They were protesting against the delay in arresting a person for his Facebook post that allegedly contained “derogatory” remarks about Prophet Mohammad.
When the accused was not arrested till late hours of Tuesday evening, the mob got violent and started burning the police vehicles. The violence continued till early hours of Wednesday when police resorted to opening fire to stop it. By the end of it, three people died and over 50 police personnel were injured. The police have arrested the accused, identified as P Naveen, nephew of Akhanda Srinivas Murthy, Congress MLA from Pulekeshinagar. And an investigation is going on in the case of people who died.
The claims of Bengaluru violence being “pre-planned”
Though, the main reason for the violence that erupted is being seen as the alleged Facebook post, the twist comes as Karnataka government is claiming a conspiracy and says that it was “pre planned” violence. On Wednesday evening, former CM H. D. Kumaraswamy indicated the incident to be an organized attack.
The Home minister Basavaraj Bommai said, “There are reports that the violence is a fallout of rivalry among local political groups but we will not comment till an investigation is done.”
“This is a kind of organized way to create unrest,”
–R. Ashok, Karnataka’s Revenue minister.
A local social worker Shafi Ahmed also indicated that the Bengaluru violence might have been set up to discredit Murthy who won with the largest margin in 2018 elections. “In the 2018 assembly elections, Murthy won by over 80,000 votes, which was the highest margin in Bengaluru. He could not have won by such a margin without the support of Muslims. This incident may be part of efforts to discredit Murthy and help another politician who has lost ground in the area,” he said.
Besides this, the police are also probing the role of Social Democratic Party of India (SDPI) in Bengaluru violence as they gathered outside the police station along with people to protest against the delay in arresting the accused. SDPI had filed a complaint against Naveen for the Facebook post.
“They began demanding that the suspect be handed over. Soon, the situation went out of hand. We have video footage to link SDPI activists to the violence,” the police said.
Though, SDPI has claimed differently. “When complaints were filed at 7 pm at the station, the Inspector and ACP asked us to wait. Even by 11.30 pm, police had not arrested the culprit. This led to worsening of the situation,” said SDPI’s Karnataka general secretary Abdul Hannan.
Now, the police have arrested the accused along with 145 others for burning police vehicles and vandalizing the premises of HJ halli, KJ halli police station, Kaval Bysandra localities and targeting the house of Congress MLA Murthy. The Facebook post has been retrieved and an investigation is going on. The Karnataka government has ordered a Magistrate investigation in the matter.