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‘Blaming Cong to cover up failure’: Shivakumar slams Karnataka home minister over Bengaluru violence

The Congress in Karnataka on Saturday slammed home minister Basavaraj Bommai over his alleged failure to prevent the violence in Bengaluru that left three dead, and said he sought to blame the ‘internal strife’ in the grand old party for the incident.

“I read the Home Minister’s statement.. Who is he? Any authority or sub-inspector or has he been appointed as the commissioner of police? Who is he to talk about investigating the corporators, blackmail and threaten them by serving notices to them?” Congress state chief DK Shivakumar asked.

He was addressing reporters here after hoisting tricolour at his party office on the occasion of the Independence Day.

Bommai had on Friday alleged that internal squabble in Congress and SDPI’s larger conspiracy to disturb law and order were among the reasons behind the recent violence in Pulakeshinagar constituency here.

Three people were killed after police opened fire to quell a mob that went on a rampage in D J Halli and adjoining areas on Tuesday night over an inflammatory social media post allegedly put out by P Naveen, a relative of MLA Akhanda Srinivasa Murthy.

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The MLA’s residence and a police station at DJ Halli were torched by rioters who also set many police and private vehicles afire, and looted the belongings of the legislator and those of his sister.

Shivakumar, a former minister, further said the BJP-led government in the state was trying to give the riots a caste colour only to ‘cover up’ its failure.

Alleging that communal violence takes place whenever BJP comes to power, the state Congress chief said the Sringeri incident was planned by BJP and Bajrang Dal.

Also read: Bengaluru’s dark night | HT Editorial

He was referring to the incident that occurred two days ago in Sringeri, where a flag was found atop a statue of Adiguru Shankaracharya leading to tension in the temple town.

A man, who had allegedly picked up a poster from the nearby mosque and threw it on Shankaracharya’s statue under the influence of liquor has been arrested.

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