A protest by Bharatiya Janata Party activists against the alleged murder of a Sangh Parivar activist in Karnataka’s Kumta town turned violent on Monday, with protestors pelting stones and setting a police officer’s vehicle on fire, The Hindu reported. At least seven police personnel were injured in the incident.
The BJP’s Karnataka leadership had called for a shutdown in Kumta and Karwar towns on Monday to protest the alleged killing of Paresh Kamalakar Mesta in Honnavar. The party had also called for protests in Bengaluru and New Delhi.
The saffron party took out a rally in Kumta on Monday. However, violence erupted while the rally was coming to an end, unidentified police officials told The Hindu. “The angry activists stopped a Bhatkal-bound Karnataka state transport bus and began to pelt stones at some of the commuters,” a police official said. We had to resort to caning the protesters to protect the commuters.”
The protestors also pelted stones at the police officials, injuring seven of them. They set ablaze the car of Inspector General of Police (Western Range) Hemant Nimbalkar, and also damaged several other vehicles, including a Karnataka state transport bus.
Kumta Superintendent of Police Vinayak Patil said late on Monday that the situation had been brought under control, and that action was being taken against the attackers. Uttara Kannada Deputy Commissioner SS Nakul has barred public meetings and rallies across the district from Tuesday to Thursday.