Dakshina Kannada remains tense as protests turn violent after Bajrang Dal activist is hacked to death in Mangaluru

Mangaluru: A Hindu activist, who was hacked to death, was cremated amid tight security on Thursday, as simmering tension prevailed in the district over his killing.

Tension prevailed at Katipalla when the body of Deepak Rao was taken to his home by the police without allowing a funeral procession planned by his family and various right-wing groups.

 Dakshina Kannada remains tense as protests turn violent after Bajrang Dal activist is hacked to death in Mangaluru

Representational image. Getty images

The Dakshina Kannada district administration later allowed the procession to be taken out from his house to the cremation ground, accepting the bereaved family's demand.

Deputy Commissioner Sasikanth Senthil and city police commissioner TR Suresh succeeded in convincing the family and activists of various Hindu organisations not to insist on the state home minister's presence before the body could be taken home.

Police maintained tight vigil during the funeral procession.

Senthil said the family would soon receive the Rs 10 lakh compensation announced by the government.

RSS leader Kalladka Prabhakar Bhat alleged that the government has been adopting an "anti-Hindu policy". The 28-year-old Rao, who was associated with the Bajrang Dal and the Vishwa Hindu Parishad, was killed by a four-member gang on Wednesday.

They were arrested within hours after the attack. Earlier, right-wing activists and Rao's parents did not allow the body to be brought out of the ambulance, the police said.

Hindu organisations had decided to take the body from the hospital to his house at Katipalla in a procession, but sensing trouble police had taken it to the residence.

The body was moved out of the mortuary's rear door and when it reached the residence, activists and family members objected to removing the body from the ambulance, protesting what they said "the secret operation" conducted by police.

A bandh was observed in Surathkal and Katipalla areas in the district as a mark of protest.

Right-wing leaders and others staged a protest at Ganeshkatte in Surathkal, where a large crowd gathered. The protesters raised slogans against the police and the state government and demanded justice for Rao's family.

They wanted the state home minister to personally visit the family.

Two incidents of violence were reported late Wednesday night from Kottara Chowki and Surathkal areas, the police said.

A group of miscreants attacked a youth when he was proceeding from Katipalla towards Mangaluru to attend his cousin's wedding.

He has been admitted to a hospital with head injuries. At Kottara Chowki in the city, a 47-year-old man was attacked by a group of persons late last night when he was returning home after shutting his shop.

His condition is said to be serious, the police said. Strongly condemning the "cold-blooded murder", BJP leaders R Ashok and Ashwathnarayana have demanded an NIA probe into it.

They alleged that the Congress government in the state had allowed "jihadi forces" to have a field day and to indulge in "wanton killings" of Hindu workers in pursuance of its "vote-bank politics" and minority appeasement.

With this killing, the number of Hindutva workers who have fallen to the "murderous agenda of jihadi forces" has risen to 22, they said.

A series of killings of "Hindu activists" has often caused tension in the communally-sensitive Dakshina Kannada district in the coastal region.

The BJP has been accusing the Congress of adopting "a soft approach" towards "jihadi forces", a charge dismissed by the Siddaramaiah government, which has accused the saffron party of trying to polarise the situation.

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Updated Date: Jan 05, 2018 12:40:18 IST