The offices of two newspapers here were attacked by masked men on Tuesday night.
At 9 p.m., four masked men forced their way into the office of Kannada Prabha and set fire to the furniture in the lobby. They also damaged five computers, printers, and glass panels.
About 30 minutes later, the office of eveninger Jaykirana in an apartment complex was attacked by four men. Computers and furniture were damaged and an employee sustained minor injuries. Apartment residents said a large number of men on motorcycles waited outside during the attack. Offices of some newspapers claimed they received threat calls.
Superintendent of Police A.S. Rao told reporters the attacks appeared to have been carried out by the same gang.
Shimoga and Hassan, which witnessed widespread violence on Monday, remained calm but tense on Tuesday.
Monday’s violence followed protests by Muslim organisations against the publication of an article in a Kannada daily.
The article is a translation of an essay by Bangladeshi writer Taslima Nasreen on wearing of “burka” by Muslim women, and contains remarks that could be considered religiously insensitive and provocative.
On Tuesday, shops, hotels, business establishments, petrol bunks, schools and colleges remained closed and autos did not ply in Hassan.
Although the Sri Rama Sene had given a bandh call, its activists stayed away. However, the KSRTC operated its services and banks were open.
Entry points to Shimoga city sealed
Entry points to Shimoga in Karnataka, where curfew was extended to Tuesday following violence on Monday, were sealed.
The funeral of Sadiq (23) and Abdul Lateef (35), killed in Monday’s violence in the city, were held under tight police security.
Sadiq, a labourer from Tipu Nagar, died in a police firing on the MKK Road, while Lateef, a push-cart vendor of Vidyanagar, died in an assault by a mob at Tank Mohalla.
Shimoga is Chief Minister B.S. Yeddyurappa’s home town.
Deputy Commissioner and District Magistrate Pankaj Kumar Pandey told reporters that 45 injured people were undergoing treatment at the McGann Hospital.
Police kept in dark
Shimoga Superintendent of Police S. Murugan said that at a meeting on Sunday evening, Muslim leaders reportedly decided to protest against an article published in a Kannada daily. He invited the leaders for a discussion, but “none of them turned up.” The Police were kept in the dark about the plan to take out a procession to present a memorandum to the Deputy Commissioner. The procession went directly to the Ameer Ahmed Circle where a large number of people had assembled. Subsequently, Mr. Pandey came to the Ameer Ahmed Circle to receive the memorandum. It was from here that the trouble started.
PTI reports from Delhi:
Ms. Nasreen, in a statement made available to PTI, said: “the incident in Karnataka on Monday shocked me. I learned that it was provoked by an article written by me that appeared in a newspaper. But I have never written any article for any Karnataka newspaper in my life.”