Govt to present gallantry award to ex-cop

Retired DySP Sadanand had rescued the former CM from a mob in Mandya

March 28, 1978, is an unforgettable day in the life of a police inspector from Mysore (now Mysuru), K S Sadanand. It gains prominence at a time when the State government is celebrating the birth centenary of former chief minister D Devaraj Urs here on Thursday.

The government will confer a gallantry award on Sadanand on the day.

Urs was addressing a public meeting in Mandya on that day (March 28, 1978). Then, a section of the gathering started raising slogans against him, opposing the plans to build a canal (that was named later as D Devaraj Urs canal, popularly known as Varuna canal) in the undivided Mysore district. The farmers in Mandya were against the plans of the government for building a canal in Mysore that may stymie the irrigation prospects in the sugar bowl of the State. In no time, the number of anti-Urs protesters swelled, and went berserk by pelting stones at the chief minister, damaging three cars, including that of the chief minister. The police had a tough job on hand.

Sadanand, now 82, who retired as a DySP (of Mysore city in 1992), recalls the incident without any ado. “The then Deputy Commissioner of Mandya, Chiranjeevi Singh, telephoned DIG (Southern range, that was later upgraded to IG grade), having its headquarters in Mysuru city on that day. The DIG was asked to send additional force to quell the mob that had been targeting the chief minister. Soon, I (Inspector at the DIG’s office)  the DIG, and one platoon of Karnataka State Reserve Police (KSRP) force comprising 40 personnel rushed to the spot”, recalls Sadanand.

No sooner the contingent of policemen from Mysuru went to Mandya, the chief minister and former MLA Bomme Gowda had taken refuge at the house of one Rajkumar, behind the Congress party office. The mob outside was hurling expletives and showed no remorse. With no option, the DIG ordered for lathicharge and Sadanand-led police personnel seized the opportunity. As the force started caning the mob, Sadanand displayed exemplary bravery, making his way into the house where the chief minister and others had taken refuge. Sadanand whisked away the chief minister into the police van and brought him to Hotel Metropole in Mysuru.

The incident was recorded in the Karnataka Police Gazette (Page No 418) and Sadanand’s name was recommended for ‘Meritorious Service Entry’ (MSE), that fetched him the Chief Minister’s Medal in the following year.

Describing the chief minister’s reaction to the incident in the van then, Sadanand says, “Urs remained pensive throughout his journey to Mysuru and was often holding my hands, thanking me for saving his life”.

After sometime, when Urs was attending a public meeting in Mysore, the DIG reminded the former about the officer who saved his life. “The chief minister hugged me in reverence in full public glare”, recalls Sadanand with a tinge of smile.

Sadanand was informed about the award a fortnight ago and was happy to hear that, he still remains testimony to the incident and also the birth centenary of the chief minister, whom he saved with valour.

Sadanand, a native of Udupi town in Uttara Kannada district, moved to Mysuru after joining the Police Department. A resident of Vijayashripura near Manasagangotri, Sad-anand is running Efficient Security and Detective Bureau, ever since he retired from the service.

 

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