Cong: Riots 8 km from Vidhana Soudha, can K’taka govt protect citizens?

Bengaluru, Aug 17 : When the Karnataka government could not avert riots which occurred just 7-8 km distance from the Vidhana Soudha in the heart of the city, how can it protect common people living in faraway places like Bidar, Gulbarga and others, questioned a Congress leader on Monday.

“The riot-hit places are just a few kilometres from the Vidhana Soudha, it is maximum 7-8 km from the Vidhana Soudha. So when the state government has failed to protect an MLA or the public, will this government be in a position to protect the property of people who are in Bidar or Gulbarga and faraway places,” Karnataka Congress spokesperson V.S. Ugrappa asked while speaking to IANS.

The Congress leader blamed the government and the police, calling it their failure for such riots to have erupted in such a short time.

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Ugrappa questioned what has happened to the police informers? He questioned why the state government and central government failed to keep an eye on the activities of the Social Democratic Party of India (SDPI) when it is being accused of involvement in the riots.

“When the government came to know that they are indulging in such activities, it is not a state issue, it has to be construed as a national issue. Is it not the duty of the state and national governments to follow the activities of such organisations, which they have not done. So it has to be construed as the failure of intelligence of the state as well as central governments,” Ugrappa said.

Invoking Article 21 of the Constitution of India, which guarantees life and liberty, Ugrappa said the government failed to uphold this provision as well as failed to protect property.

Expressing his suspicion on the magisterial probe ordered by the government into the riots, Ugrappa said it will ultimately be concluded pointing a finger at the Congress party for the riots.

“Now what is the intention of appointing an executive magistrate for a probe. Will this executive magistrate be in a position to give a report against the police commissioner who is a senior officer than him. So it is nothing but hushing up or trying their best to malign,” he said and claimed that the probing officer would be subjected to extreme pressure from various quarters to cover up government lapses.

“If at all the government wants to bring out the truth, the government has to order for an enquiry by a sitting judge of a high court or the Supreme Court judge,” he pointed out.

He termed the attacks and arson on MLA Akhanda Srinivas Murthy’s home and a police station as being of a very serious nature which need to be probed and reminded that the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) is currently in power both in the state and the centre.

“One thing I am 100 per cent sure, they will dictate the executive magistrate report as per their whims and fancies and finally try to frame our party. That is why a dozen leaders have attacked Congress, stating why they have not reacted immediately,” he said.

Asserting that he was one of the first Congress leaders to react to the riots, Ugrappa said he reacted at 11 p.m. itself while the riots were happening and said that he had even asked for protection for Murthy.

Ugrappa, who is a lawyer by profession, remarked that Murthy can approach the police at any point of time to invoke the SC/ST Atrocities Act in the riots case in which his house was set ablaze.

On Tuesday night, hundreds of people ran amok after Pulikeshinagar MLA Murthy’s nephew P. Naveen posted a derogatory message on social media.

The mobs pelted stones, injured 60 policemen, and committed acts of vandalism and arson in DJ Halli, KG Halli, Pulikeshinagar and Kaval Byrasandra areas, leaving the affected places resembling a warzone. The police had to resort to firing to contain the mobs. Three youth lost their lives in the violence.

Disclaimer: This story is auto-generated from IANS service.

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