Pub assault: Knuckle ring not traced

Mohammed Nalapad

The police are yet to recover the knuckle ring said to have been used by Mohammed Nalapad, the son of Congress legislator N A Haris, and his friends to assault Vidwath L, a fellow diner, at Farzi Café, UB City, on February 17. 

Both Vidwath and Praveen Venkatachalaiah, the complainant in the case, have said in their police statements that Nalapad and his friends had assaulted the former with a knuckle ring, which is a banned weapon. 

During the hearing of Nalapad's bail petition in the sessions court, Special Public Prosecutor M S Shyamsundar had contended that the banned weapon was used in the assault, suggesting that it was not a spur-of-the-moment incident, but a well-planned crime. The fact that the accused carried the knuckle ring showed that they were out to beat someone, he had argued. 

A police officer, who is part of the investigation, maintained that their inability to trace the weapon would not weaken the case. Since both the complainant and the victim concur they were beaten with the knuckle ring, that would be enough for conviction. In an attempted murder case, the victim need not have serious injuries. Just threatening someone at knifepoint amounts to attempted murder, the officer added. 

Further, a positive identification of the accused by the eyewitnesses would bolster the prosecution's case. Lastly, CCTV cameras in the cafe and Mallya Hospital, where the victim underwent treatment, clearly captured the entire incident. The charge sheet has made a strong case with clear-cut evidence, solid witnesses and the statements of the accused, he said. The CCB police have submitted an analysis of the CCTV footage in court, but are yet to hand over the video footage. 

The medical report mentioned in the charge sheet states that none of the accused was under the influence of alcohol or drugs during the assault. It was a clear case of intentional assault. 

The confessional statements of the accused corroborate this theory. In his statement to the police, Nalapad said he slapped Vidwath twice as the latter had stretched his leg in the restaurant and that he tripped over it. "I asked him to say sorry, but he refused. Then, my friends Nafi, Nasir, Arun, Manjunath, Balakrishna, Asraf, Abhishek and Sri Krishna started assaulting him and asked him to apologise. They beat him again with an ice bucket and beer bottles. I later went to the hospital and threatened him not to give a police complaint." 

Action in hospital

According to doctors, medical staff and security guards at the Mallya Hospital, Nalapad and his associates barged into the emergency room and assaulted Vidwath and his brother Sathwik. 

75 witnesses

The police have examined 75 witnesses, including Vidwath, his family members and friends, the staff at Farzi Cafè and Mallya Hospital, forensic experts and police officers. 

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Pub assault: Knuckle ring not traced

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