(MENAFN- AsiaNet News) An influential Karnataka minister's involvement in a letter advocating for the closure of a riot case has come to the fore, sparking controversy. The case pertains to the Hubli riots, which occurred on April 16, 2022, and is distinct from the previous DJ Halli and KG Halli riots or the Shimoga riot case.
Previously, former Congress MLA Tanveer Seth had sparked off a major row after reportedly writing a letter to shield those involved in the DJ Halli and KG Halli riot cases. Now, it has come to light that another prominent minister, DK Shivakumar, has written a letter requesting the closure of the Hubli riots case.
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The Additional Director General (ADG) has sought information on the case based on Minister DK Shivakumar's recommendation to the Home Department regarding the old Hubli riot case. Law and Order ADGP Hitendra has approached the Hubli-Dharwad Commissioner for their opinion on withdrawing the case. The Hubli riots unfolded after a photo status of the saffron flag was posted on a mosque, leading to thousands of Muslims gathering in front of the old Hubli police station and resulting in riots.
A police station, hospital, temple, and houses were targeted with stone pelting, and the situation was eventually brought under control by the police firing into the air. Subsequently, 158 individuals involved in the riots were arrested, and 12 FIRs were registered, culminating in a 4,000-page charge sheet. Notably, seven juvenile offenders, including AIMIM corporator Nazir Honya, have been granted bail and released, while 151 Muslim accused remain in Bellary and Kalaburagi jails. Minister DK Shivakumar's letter advocates for the removal of these rioters from the case.
Earlier, on July 23, MLA Tanveer Seth had penned a letter seeking the release of innocent individuals involved in the DJ Halli case. Home Minister Parameshwar confirmed the authenticity of the MLA's letter and instructed the Cabinet sub-committee to investigate the request. Recent revelations also indicate that Deputy Chief Minister DKS allegedly wrote a letter recommending the acquittal of the Hubli rioters in the old Hubli case, aiming to close the communal riot case.
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The Deputy Chief Minister appears to be acting in response to the MLA's letter, reaching out to the Commissioner and SP for information from the ADGP. The DG-IG has been directed to provide comprehensive case details by September 30, encompassing FIRs, charge sheets, and witness statements.
These developments raise questions about whether the government is employing a minority-focused strategy in the run-up to the 2024 Lok Sabha elections, potentially not only closing cases in DJ Halli, KG Halli, and Old Hubli but also in Shimoga, Haveri, Mandya, and Mysore
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