Historian Ramachandra Guha on Thursday refuted Karnataka Home Minister Basavaraj Bommai’s claim that the latter had apologised to him for police manhandling during a protest against the Citizenship Amendment Act and the proposed nationwide National Register of Citizens in Bengaluru in December. The historian said he had received neither a call nor an apology from the home minister.
“The home minister of Karnataka has claimed on the floor of the state Assembly that he apologised to me by phone for the manhandling by the Bengaluru Police on 19th December 2019,” Guha tweeted. “This is false. I received no such call or apology.” He added that he would have anyway rejected the apology.
“I was proud to be one of thousands of peaceful protesters who defied the state’s arbitrary action on that day,” said Guha. He was referring to the Karnataka High Court ruling last week that observed that the imposition of prohibitory orders in Bengaluru on December 18 ahead of protests against the Citizenship Amendment Act was illegal and “cannot stand the scrutiny of law”.
The historian was detained on December 19 when he was protesting in front of the Town Hall in the city in defiance of the prohibitory orders. He was later released.
Bommai, while apologising to former Speaker KR Ramesh Kumar for being issued a notice by the Mangaluru police when he tried to enter the city, claimed he had personally apologised to Guha, PTI reported. “There might have been minor discrepancies, like that of historian Ramachandra Guha, being manhandled during a protest,” he had said on Wednesday. “I have called and apologised to him.”
Former Chief Minister Siddaramaiah asked the home minister to apologise to people and Guha in front of the media. “Bommai has committed a perjury on the floor of the House,” he tweeted. “It answers the question of where BJP workers derive their motivation to spread fake news.”