Former Mayor among those named in CCB chargesheet in D.J. Halli case

It states that political rivalry led to violence in which MLA’s house was set on fire

The Central Crime Branch (CCB) police filed an interim 400-page chargesheet recently in connection with the violence in D.J. Halli and K.G. Halli in August, citing that political rivalry between the former Mayor, former councillor and the present MLA R. Akhanda Srinivasa Murthy led to the incident.

The CCB has stated the involvement of R. Sampath Raj, former Mayor from the Congress, and his personal assistant Arun, car driver Santhosh, and former Pulakeshinagar councillor Abdul Rakhib Zakir, among 60 others, alleging that the accused organised the violent mob and provoked them to set fire to the house and office of the MLA.

Sources said both Mr. Sampath Raj and Mr. Zakir, named in the chargesheet, are trying to get anticipatory bail. Mr. Zakir did not turn up for the CCB questioning scheduled on Monday.

Derogatory post

The chargesheet stated that on August 11, the MLA’s nephew Naveen, who is presently in judicial custody, had posted derogatory statements hurting the sentiments of a minority community, after which a couple of youths started gathering at Kavalbyrasandra in front of Naveen’s house and started shouting slogans.

Mr. Sampath Raj and Mr. Zakir had political rivalry with Mr. Murthy and took advantage of the situation, allegedly hatching a plan to carry out the violent protest and attack, sources said. The chargesheet reportedly mentions that the duo had provoked the crowd to go to the MLA’s house and attack him and set fire to the house.

A senior CCB officer said that these are preliminary charges and the role of the former Mayor has been mentioned in the chargesheet, but he would be questioned to record his statement and a chargesheet filed on the outcome of interrogation and investigatio

n findings.

There are 72 FIRs filed in D.J. Halli and K.G. Halli police stations and 421 accused have been arrested, while there are two cases filed on police firing. Even the National Investigation Agency is probing the case.

The CCB is conducting the investigation on the attack on the MLA’s house while the rest of the FIRs have been investigated by east division police.

Protest demanding arrest

Supporters of Mr. Murthy, on Tuesday, staged a protest at Periyar Circle in D.J. Halli demanding that the police arrest Mr. Sampath Raj and Mr. Zakir.

The protesters demanded that despite the police having ample evidence of their involvement, they are yet to arrest them.

Meanwhile, eight accused in the violence case are yet to be released despite getting bail. Ishrathullah, member of the Secular Advocates Front, which is taking up the cases, said that though the eight, who have been granted bail by a sessions court, were supposed to be released on Tuesday, the police have taken them on body warrant in another case. This is to avoid bail for the accused, which would be challenged in the High Court, Mr. Ishrathullah said.

According to him, the CCB has filed 73 FIRs against over 400 people, out of which 300 have been booked under the UAPA provisions.

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Sagar Biswas

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