Shivamogga inches towards peace after violent protests over activist's murder

Harsha was hacked to death by a gang of miscreants last Sunday night
Last Updated 26 February 2022, 06:21 IST

After witnessing large-scale violence following the murder of 28-year-old Bajrang Dal activist Harsha, the Shivamogga district is limping back to normalcy.

All curfew curbs have been lifted. The district administration, however, will keep prohibitory orders in place till Sunday with all schools and colleges remaining closed till Monday.

Meanwhile, the special teams formed to probe the case have made two more arrests taking the number of arrested persons to ten. The arrested have been identified as Abdul Roshan (24), a resident of Bhadravathi town and Jafar Sadiq (55) from Shivamogga city.

Shops and commercial establishments in Shivamogga are allowed to operate between 6 a.m and 4 p.m on Saturday. However, heavy police presence will continue in the city to ensure absolute restoration of peace.

Two cars and a bike used for the murder by the accused have been recovered. The police informed that the registration numbers of these vehicles do not belong to Karnataka.

The special teams have zeroed in on the girls who allegedly made last calls to Harsha seeking help to trap him. However, during the preliminary inquiries, the police could not find any connection between the girls and the murderers, sources said. A search is on for the deceased Harsha's mobile which has gone missing.

Youths who flashed weapons before the police have also been identified and will be taken into custody. Curfew was imposed from Monday, after murder of Harsha on Sunday night.

According to police, the killers had made new weapons, including machetes, to hack Harsha to death in a furnace located in Bhadravathi town.

The killers had followed Harsha in a car on last Sunday morning to night and observed all his movements. All the 10 accused have been taken into police custody for further investigation. The district administration has lodged cases against 500 persons, for taking the body in a procession violating prohibitory orders.

Harsha was hacked to death by a gang of miscreants last Sunday night.

Harsha, who was popularly known as Harsha Hindu, was in the forefront of 'Hindutva' activities and questioned illegal transportation of cows.

He was sharing fierce Hindutva messages on his social media accounts and also commented on the hijab issue. The murder has led to widespread violence across the state. Curfew was clamped orders since last Monday and as many as 2,000 policemen have been deputed to ensure no untoward incident happens.

The ruling BJP claims it to be more than a murder saying that a message has been conveyed through the murder by certain organisations. The opposition Congress maintained that as elections are nearing, the BJP wants to take political advantage of the murder. Social Democratic Party of India (SDPI), whose role is suspected by BJP leaders behind the murder, has held a press conference and alleged that Sangh Parivar hand is there behind it.

The government has decided to block the Facebook page by the name "Managaluru Muslim", where the murder of Harsha was celebrated through a post. Information on the page has been sought.

An FIR has been lodged and investigation the matter is on.

Two policemen who liked the page were taken into custody and later released in Dakshina Kannada district.

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(Published 26 February 2022, 06:21 IST)

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