Three people have been killed in police firing after a mob rampaged through Bengaluru’s Pulakshi Nagar and vandalized a police station and a Congress MLA’s residence after their relative shared an ‘outrageous’ social media post.
On Wednesday morning, police said that more than 60 of their personnel were injured in the clashes, and 110 people were arrested on riot charges. Prohibitory orders were declared under section 144 across the city, and a curfew was announced in the Banaswadi police subdivision border.
One person who said Congress MLA Akhanda Srinivas is a close relative of Murthy allegedly shared a Facebook post that enraged a community member, police sources said, adding it provoked arson and riots. He has since been arrested.
The mob, which gathered after 8 p.m. on Tuesday, vandalized the MLA Statue’s, residence, and damaged the parked vehicles before targeting the police station and police vehicles. Chief Minister BS Yeddyurappa appealed to the people to maintain peace and ignore the rumors and in a series of tweets condemning the mob attack in east Bengaluru through the night.
“I appeal to you not to react to the situation and maintain peace,” Yeddyurappa tweeted. “The attack on journalists, police, and the public in the riot last night was unacceptable. The government will not tolerate such provocation and rumors. Strict action against criminals is certain”. “I appeal to people to maintain peace and act with restraint and without panic,” he said in another tweet.
The CM, who was discharged from hospital two days ago after getting treatment for COVID-19, is expected to meet with his cabinet colleagues and senior police officials to discuss the incident. Karnataka Congress Chief D K Shivkumar condemned the incident and urged the people not to take over the law.
The Congress has convened a meeting of party MLAs from Bengaluru this afternoon to discuss the issue. Congress MLA and former minister B Z Jamir Ahmed Khan tweeted: “I hope the police will take action against all those responsible for this. I also urge everyone to remain calm and maintain peace in the region.”
An eyewitness said on Wednesday that during the night of violence in Bengaluru, there was a stiff crowd of stone-pelting and property damage on police personnel. Sharif, an eyewitness to the destruction at the police station in DJ Hali, said he had come to file his statement. “We are from civil defense and have come to the safety of the police. “It was not a police fault, it was the public’s fault,” he told reporters.
The mob also vandalized Murthy’s house after social media posts by his nephew. The residence of Congress MLA Asananda Srinivas Murthy was also attacked after the violence erupted.
Curfew has been forced in the town near DJ Hali and KG Hali police station border after violence ejected in the area. The Bengaluru police have also imposed section 144 of the Code of Criminal Procedure (CRPC) in Bengaluru, restrictions over four people standing together may seem.