Violence in Hubballi in Karnataka following social media posts; Article 144 imposed, 40 arrested | Hubballi News

HUBBALLI: A large number of people reportedly went on a rampage, damaging numerous police vehicles, a nearby hospital and a Hanuman temple in the old town of Hubballi in Karnataka and injuring police officers on duty over a social media post in the early hours of Sunday.
“Section 144 restraining orders have been strengthened in the town of Hubballi,” police said.
“About 40 people were arrested and FIRs were recorded. Twelve of our duty officers were injured and police vehicles were damaged. We have taken all precautionary measures to ensure that such incidents do not happen again. We will not spare those who have taken the law into their own hands,” Hubballi-Dharwad Police Commissioner Labhu Ram told reporters.
According to him, someone had posted a message on social media, which others objected to and filed a complaint with the police. Subsequently, the person was arrested and a case was registered.
Dissatisfied with the action, some people began to gather around the police station. They were persuaded and later dispersed from the place.
Around midnight, large numbers of people again began to gather around the police station, the officer said, adding that their leaders had been summoned to the station and briefed on the action taken so far.
However, the crowd outside the station was not ready to listen to them and they went wild, Labhu Ram said, adding that the crowd damaged some police vehicles as they resorted to throwing rocks.
“In this incident, a dozen police officers were injured,” the police commissioner said.
“We will not spare those who have done themselves justice. We have taken all preventive measures to prevent the recurrence of such an incident,” Labhu Ram said.
The use of a large number of stones made police suspect that a truck full of stones and bricks had been used in the crime.
Speaking to reporters in Hosapete, the district headquarters town of the newly carved Vijayanagar district, Karnataka Chief Minister Basavaraj Bommai called it an organized attack and said the organizations behind it should know that the state will not tolerate such incidents.
“I want to say very clearly that whoever takes the law into their own hands, our police will not hesitate to take strict action against them (rioters). Whoever they are… Therefore, whoever is behind this and has instigated the mob will be punished. I want to tell the organizations behind such incidents, don’t break the law. The state of Karnataka will not tolerate it,” Bommai said.
He also appealed to the people not to give a different political color to this incident as it should be viewed from a law and order perspective.
Responding to a question, “If a large number of people gather in front of the police station, it certainly means that it was an organized crime.”
The state’s interior minister, Araga Jnanendra, said some police officers were injured, including the inspector from the Old City police station.
“A policeman is in serious condition. Some people involved in the attack have been arrested. It was a pre-planned attack. The disbelievers wanted to create Devara Jeevanahalli and Kadugondahalli as an incident in Hubballi,” Jnanendra said.
The Home Secretary was referring to the 2020 riot in Bangalore where around 4000 Muslims burned down the residence of the Congress MP from Pulakeshi Nagar assembly constituency in Bangalore R Akhanda Srinivas Murthy and his sister about d a social media post by his parent.
The mob then torched numerous vehicles and torched the DJ Halli and KG Halli police stations. During this incident, four people were killed, three of them by police fire.
Reacting to Hubballi’s outburst, top BJP MP Basanagouda Patil Yatnal demanded that the government act firmly against the disbelievers so that they would never think of repeating the incident.
Denouncing the incident, former Chief Minister HD Kumaraswamy said it was not appropriate for vested interests to create divisions between communities for personal gain.
In a series of tweets, the JD(S) second-in-command said those who took the law into their own hands should have trusted the system.
“For the past few days, the communal cauldron has been boiling. This is hurting everyone. This should not continue. The Hubballi incident shows that we have not learned any lessons from the past,” Kumaraswamy said.