Unpardonable dillydallying by Karnataka police in investigating the murders of Hindutva-supporters !

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Advocate Virendra Ichalkaranjikar, National President, Hindu Vidhidnya Parishad

With regard to the murder of Gauri Lankesh, (the usual) discussions on ‘Saffron Terror’ , ‘Murder of Thoughts’ is going on. The Karnataka police have applied the stringent KCOCA (Karnataka Control of Organized Crimes Act) to the accused in the Gauri Lankesh murder case. Those booked under other sections can be kept in police custody for up to 14 days whereas in case of those arrested under KCOCA, this duration is 30 days. The possibility of getting bail is almost nil in case of arrest under KCOCA. KCOCA has been used in Karnataka extremely rarely. Similarly, under UAPA (Unlawful Activities Prevention Act), there is a provision for up to 30 days police custody. The Sanatan Sanstha is being targeted in cases of murders of Dr Dabholkar, Pansare, Gauri Lankesh and Kalburgi (In case of Kalburgi, no connection with any organization has emerged so far.) Murder is a serious crime and cannot be justified under any circumstances. However, the discriminatory approach of the Karnataka police becomes very starkly visible when one goes through the details of investigation of murders committed over an 8 year period in one district of Karnataka.

Karnataka police wind up investigation of lethal attack on Shri Giridhar and his friend !

An attempt was being made to construct a mosque on the land belonging to a temple in Karanaka. The atmosphere in Mysuru had become tense in July 2009 after the said construction was demolished. A riot had erupted resulting in death of 3 persons. The next day, on July 3, 2009, Shri Giridhar and his friend were attacked. Both had survived the attack. The Hindutva-supporters raised their voice against the above. However, the police commissioner Shri Sunil Agarwal washed his hands off the matter sighting ‘personal enmity’ as the reason for the attack. The police also closed the matter filing the ‘C Summary Report’. (This report is filed when police are unable to find the culprits in a given case and would rather like to close the matter instead of continuing the investigation further.) However, a confession made by the accused Mujamil arrested in connection with murder of Hindutva-supporter K Raju regarding this attack (on Giridhar and friend) forced the police to reopen the case. Neverthless, the (reopened) investigation was carried out with (deliberate?) serious loopholes.

Mujamil was a part of the ‘Popular Front of India’. He got bail because UAPA was not mentioned in the charge-sheet although applied at the time of arrest. Due to this, Abid Pasha of the ‘Karnataka Forum for Dignity’ also got bail. Thus, in spite of full knowledge of the fact that the above activities against Hindu leaders amounted to ‘terrorism’, the police carried out utterly lackadaisical investigation and even worse charge-sheet. Thus, the investigation for a crime committed in 2009 was done in 2016 and a charge-sheet filed in 2018. The case has not yet started. Whenever the case starts, it appears that it will go on for about 3 to 4 years resulting in acquittals. All this, thanks to the then Chief Minister of Karnataka Siddaramaiya and his police. An inquiry has begun in the matter after complaints from the Hindu Vidhidnya Parishad.

The attempts by the government to save the accused in case of attack on Anand Pai and his colleague resulting in colleague’s death !

Abid Pasha and gang had attacked Shri Anand Pai and his friend Ramesh while they were travelling on a two-wheeler at night on June 6, 2009. Ramesh succumbed to injuries. As usual, police filed a C Summary Report on May 2, 2011 in the court without doing any serious investigation and closed the matter. Even in this case, the police were forced to reopen the investigation due to the confession made in the K Raju case of 2016. In spite of knowing fully well that this was an organized gang, KCOCA was not applied. Instead, UAPA was nominally applied. Bail was not opposed although it was a case of terrorist activity. The accused connected to Popular Front of India were remanded to police custody for minimum duration. No narco-test was carried out. Was all this due to pressure from the Congress government ? This question needs to be raised and (satisfactory) answer should be obtained.

Serious lapses in investigation of death of Shri Harish of RSS due to lethal attack on him and Shri Satish.

In another instance, one Thyagaraj Pillai was murdered by Abid Pasha and Ghouse Khan. Ghouse Khan had borrowed Rs 15,000/- from Shri Pillai and was not returning the amount. He hada doubt that his sister and Pillai were having an affair. Pillai was killed on 21.5.2010. The police did not arrest the accused.

In yet another instance, two students from Mysuru, Vighnesh and Sudhindra (who were brothers) were killed when they tried to contact the police and their bodies were thrown on the outskirts. The accused in this case admitted that they had murdered Thyagaraj Pillai. However, their confession was not recorded in front of a magistrate. Hence, the confession was not admitted as evidence. No other evidences were gathered in the matter. Due to this, the police were not able to arrest Abid Pasha and he went underground. He surfaced after all the other accused in the case were acquitted. He prayed in the court that since all the other accused in the case had been acquitted, he also be acquitted. Justice Fanindra granted this and acquitted him on January 11, 2018.

Overall, in all the above cases, the ‘modus operandi’ of the police was non-application of KCOCA, nominal application of UAPA and nominal arrest, lackadaisical investigation followed by bail and eventual acquittal. It is particularly notable that no SIT was formed in spite of the fact that there was a series of attacks and murders of Hindu activists. K Raju was attacked with sickles and killed for taking the lead in constructing a temple. Even in this case, the police (deliberately?) committed the same mistakes.

No action, in spite of clear connection with PFI, an organization known for indulging in violent activities !

In this case, there was a connection with PFI (Popular Front of India). This gang (the Abid Pasha gang) was previously operating under the name ‘Karnataka Forum for Dignity’. Later thay had merged with PFI. In spite of all this, there was no cacophony of demands for a ban nor any demands for application of stricter laws to the case. ‘Freedom fighters’ such as Prakash Raj, Kavita Lankesh or Doraiswamy have not stood up. This is nothing but intellectual terrorism.

The attempt by the Congress government to target Hindu activists through conveniently diligent investigation in some select cases is obvious. No one had any better expectations from the Congress. The silence of BJP and the RSS is, however, utterly painful. Will the victims in all these cases never get justice ?