In less than a week since the Karnataka government passed the stringent anti-cow slaughter law, incidents of arson against beef stalls have been reported in Mangaluru’s Ullal. According to reports, three makeshift beef stalls were set on fire by unknown miscreants in Olapete, near a market, in the wee hours of Saturday. The Ullal Police have registered a case against unknown persons. Following the incident, top police officers, including City Police Commissioner N Shashi Kumar, visited the spot, reported The Times of India. According to the report, all these stalls were operating with valid licenses. The report quoted Ayyub Manchila, Vice-President, Ullal City Municipal Council, as saying that arrangements will be made for all persons who have been affected due to this act of arson.
Daijiworld reported that the stalls were termed “illegal” by right-wing groups, Bajrang Dal and Vishwa Hindu Parishad. The report said that the two organisations had also petitioned the civic body and the police on January 7, demanding to halt their business.
According to reports, the stalls were set up as the main market area is undergoing renovation. The report identified the owners of the stall as MC Bava, MC Khader and Hanif. It also quoted the owners saying that they have been doing business in the area for many years.
This incident has prompted strong reactions from the Congress party in the state. Former Minister and Mangaluru MLA UT Khader demanded that those who lost their stalls be allowed to conduct business at the same place. He said that he has also spoken with the City Police Commissioner about the incident and demanded the arrest of the miscreants. He said this attack was done to create communal disharmony in society.
The local block-level leaders have said that if the miscreants are not arrested promptly, then they will hold protests.