The coastal city of Mangaluru is on the edge following the death of a RSS worker named Sharath Madivala. Madivala, 28, was brutally stabbed by a group of unidentified bike-borne assailants on 4 July at BC Road area in Mangaluru.
The victim, a resident Kandur in Dakshin Kannad District of Karnataka, was running a laundry shop at BC Road area. He was attacked around 9.30 PM on 4 July when he was on his way back home after closing his laundry for the day. Police said the bike-borne miscreants assaulted Madivala between Kaikamba and BC Road Police Checkpoint. The victim suffered serious injuries on his head and neck. Madivala succumbed to his injuries in AJ Hospital on Friday night. Police said Madivala has no enmity with anyone.
On Saturday, the mortal remains of Madivala were taken in a funeral procession from AJ Hospital to Kandur. Hundreds of activists belonging to RSS, BJP and some Hindu organisations took part in the funeral procession with black flags tied to their two-wheelers. As the funeral procession reached near Somayaji Building just before BC Road junction, stones were pelted at them from the building and vicinity.
“The miscreants were hiding behind Sultan Complex and the building next to it. As soon as the funeral procession passed by the complex, they began pelting stones. They began pelting stones at people in the funeral procession. One man was hit by a large stone on his head and sustained minor injuries,” Dakshina Kannada SP, Sudheer Kumar Reddy told The News Minute.
Reports suggest that several vehicles including three cars, an auto rickshaw and a bus were damaged in the stone-pelting. Shops have remained closed fearing clashes. Police had to lathi-charge and later arrested over a dozen people for the stone-pelting, though no arrests have been made yet in the murder case.
Former Mayor of Mangaluru K Ashraf, Suhail Khadak, Ashraf Kinaar Kudroli, CM Muttappa, Mohammad Hanif, H Meed Kudroli and Naushad Bandaru were arrested for stone-pelting. They have been booked for rioting and damaging property.
Section 144 of the Code of Criminal Procedure has been clamped in the area since the attack on Madivala. On Friday, BJP MPs Shobha Karandlaje and Nalin Kumar Kateel led party workers in a protest. They were briefly held by the police.
Over 2,000 policemen, including CRPF personnel, have been deployed in the city to maintain law and order. Meanwhile, the prohibitory orders have been extended across Dakshina Kannada district.
The brutal attack on Madivala is a grim reminder of the lynching of 38-year-old Kithaganahalli Vasu in Bangaluru in March. In a repeat of CPM model of violence in Kerala, RSS and BJP workers are being systematically targeted in Siddaramaiah-led Congress rule in Karnataka.
Recently, a Facebook page called ‘Mangalore Muslims’ had posted a threatening message on Kalladka Prabhakar Bhat, a RSS strongman in Dakshina Kannada district. After the news of Sharath’s death, the same page even celebrated the murder.