TP members thrash agri officer

Elected representatives lock office; three arrested

Taluk Panchayat members assaulted an assistant director of Agriculture for the latter’s absence from a meeting, here on Monday. Three members have been arrested in connection with the incident.

During the meeting convened at the TP auditorium, members - Hanumanthappa Balichakra, Sharanappa Motnalli and Hanumantha Lingeri - alleged that the assistant director of Agriculture department had not been attending the meetings. They accused the officer of embezzlement of funds and urged the president to register a criminal case against him. The TP executive officer contacted Rajanna, the assistant director, over the phone and asked him to attend the meeting. The director replied that he would come to the meeting a little later.

The enraged members insisted that the meeting be suspended till the officer arrived. They later boycotted the meeting and went to the Agriculture office.

On seeing the assistant director at the office, the members threatened to lock the office and asked him to come out. A verbal duel ensued and a few members abused the officer in a filthy language.

Soon the TP members beat Rajanna with slippers, thrashed and kicked him. A staff member who came to the rescue of the officer too was not spared. Unable to bear the pain, the officer began to scream for help.

The office staff intervened and brought Rajanna out of the office. The members then locked the office and staged a dharna.

Rajanna and taluk panchayat members have lodged a complaint and a counter-complaint at the city police station. Three members - Sadashiva Reddy, Sharanappa Motnalli and Hanumantha Lingeri - have been arrested.

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