Two persons have died and around 60 police personnel have been injured after violent clashes broke out in the eastern part of Bengaluru on Tuesday night, over a derogatory Facebook message, allegedly posted by a relative of Congress MLA Srinivas Murthy.
The incident took place at Kaval Byrasandra in Bengaluru, outside Pulkeshinagar Congress MLA R Akhanda Srinivas Murthy's house. The mob alleged that a Facebook post by the MLA's relative on Prophet Muhammad was offensive to Islam and its beliefs, reports ANI. A large number of people gathered near Murthy's residence and vandalised it and damaged the vehicles parked there
The mob then targeted the nearby DJ Halli police station setting vehicles outside the station on fire, believing that the police had kept the accused detained there, reports PTI.
The police teams that tried to contain the violence also bore the brunt of the mob as their vehicles were damaged, eye-witnesses said.
Karnataka: Visuals from Bengaluru's DJ Halli Police Station area where violence broke out over an alleged inciting social media post.
Two people died & around 60 police personnel sustained injuries in the violence in Bengaluru, according to Police Commissioner Kamal Pant. pic.twitter.com/QsAALZycs0
" ANI (@ANI) August 11, 2020
Police have imposed Section 144 of Code of Criminal Procedure (CrPC) in Bengaluru to prohibit the assembly of four or more persons in an area while curfew has been imposed in DJ Halli and KG Halli police station limits.
"Two people died in police firing, one injured shifted to a hospital. Around 60 police personnel including an Additional Commissioner of Police (ACP) have been injured in the clashes," Bengaluru Police Commissioner Kamal Pant told ANI.
The police commissioner on Wednesday said that the accused has been arrested for posting derogatory posts and 110 people have been arrested for arson, stone-pelting, and assault on police.
With regard to incidents in DJ Halli, accused Naveen arrested for posting derogatory posts.. also total 110 accused arrested for arson, stone pelting and assault on police. APPEAL TO ALL TO COOPERATE WITH POLICE TO MAINTAIN PEACE.
" Kamal Pant, IPS (@CPBlr) August 11, 2020
Home Minister Basavaraj Bommai said riots and arson are against law and warned the rioters that he has given police a free hand to contain the violence. "Issue will be probed but vandalism is not the solution. Additional forces have been deployed. Action will be taken against miscreants," the state home minister said.
Later, MLA Murthy appealed to the community members to not resort to violence.
"I am appealing to my Muslim brethren that we should not resort to violence for the fault committed by some miscreants. There is no need to fight. We all are brothers. We will get the person punished as per law. We will also be with you. I appeal to the Muslim friends to be calm," he said in a video message.
Congress MLA and former minister BZ Zameer Ahmed Khan said the violence was unfortunate.
"I am hopeful that police will take action against all those who are responsible for this. I also request everyone to stay calm and maintain peace in the area," Khan tweeted.
The incident that is happening in Kaval Byrsandra is unfortunate. I am hopeful that police will take action against all those who are responsible for this.
I also request everyone to stay calm and maintain peace in the area.
" B Z Zameer Ahmed Khan (@BZZameerAhmedK) August 11, 2020
Soon after the incident, the Bengaluru police commissioner rushed to the spot but his intervention too did not stop the rioters.
Later, the Bengaluru Police tweeted that it had to lathi-charged the mob, lob tear gas and finally open fire to control them. The police said the culprits of Tuesday's violence and arson will not be spared.
With inputs from agencies