Govt failed to maintain law and order: Siddaramaiah

Last Updated 23 December 2019, 20:11 IST

Former chief minister Siddaramaiah alleged that state government had failed in maintaining law and order in the state.

"The protests against Citizenship (Amendment) Act and NRC are being held across the country peacefully. The police firing and lathi charge incidents took place only in Mangaluru."

He declared that Karnataka was facing an 'undeclared emergency' and said that the situation in Karnataka did not warrant imposition of Section 144 across the state.

In the absence of Section 144, people would have staged protest peacefully, he claimed. By imposing Section 144, the government tried to suppress the right to stage protest guaranteed to the citizens of the country, he told reporters after visiting the families of those killed in the police firing.

He said, "I was to reach Mangaluru on December 20, but had to cancel after my flight as I was denied permission to land. I am the leader of the opposition and considered as shadow chief minister in democracy.”

"The chief minister had stated that the protesters had attacked the police station and had tried to take away the weapons which is utterly false. I visited the spot where untoward incidents had taken place. The distance between the spot where the police firing took place killing two lives and Mangaluru North Police station is 1 km. There is no evidence to prove that there was an attack on the police station. Even stones were not thrown at shops and business establishments in the vicinity,” he said.

On the government’s claim that people from neighbouring Kerala indulged in violence in Mangaluru, he sought to know how many people from Kerala had been arrested in the incident.

"When the police in Bengaluru could handle 10,000 protesters protesting peacefully, why could the Mangaluru not handle 150 to 200 protesters?” he asked.

He urged the state government to dismiss the inspector, who was heard in a video clipping discussing how none were killed despite bullets being fired. The Supreme Court’s guidelines on police firing were not adhered to by the police while firing.

Flaying the police for using tear gas inside a hospital, he asked whether this is 'Police Rajya' or democracy in the country.

The former chief minister demanded the police to file a suo motu case against Union Minister of State for Railway Suresh Angadi for making a provocative statement. He is not eligible to remain as a minister, said Siddaramaiah.

"Does the enactment of Babri demolition at RSS leader’s school in Kalladka not amount to provocation?" he asked.

The sedition charges against MLA U T Khader are politically motivated, he declared.

'Weakest CM'

Siddaramaiah said B S Yediyurappa is the weakest chief minister of Karnataka.

"Many leaders within the BJP are not happy with Yediyurappa. The police firing would have been a conspiracy against him (CM). I don't know," he said.

(Published 23 December 2019, 17:54 IST)

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