A Muslim mob went on a rampage and unleashed extreme violence in Bengaluru on Tuesday evening over a Facebook post that was allegedly derogatory to Prophet Mohammad.
According to the reports, the Muslim mob hit the streets near DJ Halli and KG Halli police station areas on Tuesday evening and attacked a Congress MLA’s house after one of his relatives had allegedly made a derogatory Facebook post.
Over a 100 people had gathered around the residence of Congress MLA Akhanda Srinivasamurthy around 7:00 PM on Tuesday. Congress MLA Akhanda Srinivasamurthy represents Pulikeshinagar constituency which is reserved for the Scheduled Caste (SC). The Muslim mob, armed with sticks, iron rods, sharp metal objects and other weapons, went berserk and barged into the house of the MLA.
The angry Muslim pelted stones and began to torch vehicles, ATMs, shops near the locality while protesting against the alleged derogatory post made by one of the relatives of Dalit Congress MLA Akhanda Shrinivasamurthy. Social media posts of few people involved in the mob violence indicate that the riots could have been pre-planned as calls for the mobilisation of Muslims were allegedly made on social media platforms on Tuesday evening.
Further, the mob also set two cars on fire. The violent mobsters forced the shopkeepers to down shutters in Pulakeshinagar, Bharatinagar, Commercial Street and Tannery Road.
DJ Halli, along with Tannery Road, Shampura, Davis Road, Frazer Town and Coles Park are one of the most sensitive areas in Bengaluru city. The majority of the population in these localities are Muslims. The Bilal Bagh area in DJ Halli had become the anti-CAA and NRC protest site on the lines of Shaheen Bagh in Delhi.
Angry mob shouted Allah-hu-Akbar, Nara e taqbeer, torched police station
Soon, the situation took an ugly turn after two separate Muslim mobs gathered in front of KG Halli and DJ Halli police stations. The Muslim mobs locked the gates from outside and pelted stones at the police station. At least 10 vehicles, including Innovas of two DCPs, were damaged in front of the stations. The mob also set fire to the vehicles in front of the DJ Halli police station.
In what seems to be a pre-planned attack by the Muslim mob, the Muslim mob, carrying petrol and other weapons, also barged into the nearest police quarters and attack the premises.
The Muslim mob was seen raising Islamic slogans like ‘Allah-hu-Akbar’ and ‘Nara-e-Taqbeer’ outside the police station.
The mob even attacked media persons, who were capturing the violent incident on their phone cameras and Suvarna News journalists have been injured. The cameras and mobiles were snatched and damaged completely.
As the DCP Bheemashankar Guled visited the spot to take control of the situation, the angry mob stopped him in front of the police station gate and also pelted stones at him. Even as the police personnel were escorting the DCP to a safe location, the mob attacked the car and damaged it. They also assaulted the driver of the vehicle.
The Muslim mob, armed with all dangerous weapons and petrol, took control of the area and sealed five to six crosses barring access to police personnel and fire and emergency service personnel. The Muslim mob did not allow fire engines to enter the street and douse the fire.
The residents of the localities now gripped by panic, starting to leave houses along with kids and women to other areas in an attempt to save their lives from the Muslim mob.
Two hours after the Muslim mob unleashed the riots, the Bengaluru police attempted to control the situation and began dispersing the mob. The police fired in the air in front of the KG Halli police station. Despite the firing, there was no sign of control as the mob continued with their violence protest.
In the resulting firing, at least two people have died while a few others were injured severely. At least 60 police personnel including an Additional Commissioner of Police have sustained injuries in the clashes, said Bengaluru Police Commissioner Kamal Pant. The police have now imposed restrictions under CrPC Section 144 and curfew has been imposed in DJ Halli and KG Halli police station limits of the city.
Reportedly, the relative of the Congress MLA, Naveen, has been arrested for his allegedly offensive Facebook posts on social media, the Commissioner added. More than 100 Muslim mobsters have been arrested on Tuesday evening for unleashing riots in the city.
The senior police officers, including Bengaluru Police Commissioner Kamal Nath have arrived at the spot. The situation has been brought under control and the mob has dispersed.
Dalit Congress MLA appeals to Muslims for peace
Amidst all the violence, the Congress MLA Akhanda Srinivasa Murthy appealed to the people to maintain peace and said action will be taken against the person, who allegedly posted the post.
“I appeal to all my Muslim brethren to maintain peace and not to get carried away by the rumours and miscreants’ words. Be it a Hindu or Muslim, we all are equal. Whoever it may be trying to disrupt the harmony, they will be dealt with seriously and will be punished by the police as per the law. But let us not resort to this violence and I request all of you to keep calm,” the Congress MLA said.
Following the incident, Chief Minister BS Yediyurappa spoke to Home Minister Basavaraja Bommai and asked him to take all necessary steps to contain further spread of violence. Home Minister Bommai urged people to must maintain peace and those who resort to violence will be dealt with an iron fist.