`Insult' to Ambedkar's photo; tension in Raichur, Gulbarga

The Times of India News Service

RAICHUR: Deputy Commissioner G. Kumar Nayak and SP J. Arun Chakravarti on Sunday rushed to Janekal village in Manvi taluka in the district, where tension had broken out on Friday.

Anti-social elements had insulted the photograph of Dr Ambedkar by garlanding it with footwear and arrack sachets, causing upheaval in the village of Janekal. Dalit organisations staged a rasta roko near Nandihal cross. The police say the situation is now under control.

It has been learnt that on Friday morning, one Ramachandra Cheluvadi had visited a hotel belonging to Narayanappa for a cup of tea. The hotelier commanded Ramachandra to drink his tea outside the hotel. There was an exchange of words between the hotelier and his client, but nothing untoward happend.

However, that night, the photograph was disfigured, and it has been assumed that the hotelier is behind the incident to take his revenge. Ramachandra Cheluvadi lodged a complaint, stating that Narayanappa and some others have abetted anti-social elements to commit the offence.

Manvi tahsildar Tayappa and some police officials rushed to the spot to bring the situation under control. Police have tightened security in the area.

The Dalit Sangharsh Samiti and other organisations have threatened to stage a dharna and begin an agitation if the authorities fail to arrest the culprits within two days.

GULBARGA: Tension prevailed in the KSRTC bus stand when activists of Dalit organisations pelted stones on buses and forced shops to down shutters. They were protesting the disfigurement of the photograph of Dr B.R. Ambedkar at Janekal village in Raichur district. Activists of the Bharatiya Dalit Panthers and Rahul Yuvaka Sangha set up a road block for about two hours in front of the KSRTC bus stand on Sunday.

KSRTC sources said, ``Three KSRTC buses, two belonging to Raichur division and one from Gulbarga division, were damaged in the stone-pelting."

Immediately after the incident, all shops in the area downed their shutters. The activists later submitted a memorandum to DySP A.H. Chikkodi, addressed to Chief Minister S.M. Krishna to arrest the culprits immediately and give protection to the villagers of Janekal village.

Bahujan Samaj Party unit president Suryakant Nimbalkar, and Dalit Panthers convener Mallappa Hosmanikar led the agitation.

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Published on: June 26, 2001
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