Sporadic violence in certain pockets of the city; shops, business establishment remain closed
Two trucks and two autorickshaws damaged
Police, bandh supporters clash in at least two places
GULBARGA: Life in Gulbarga came to a halt on Friday owing to a dusk-to-dawn bandh to protest against the failure of the State Government to ban the controversial book “Anudeva Horaganavanu” authored by Banjigere Jayaprakash.
The bandh witnessed sporadic violence in certain pockets of the city with the youths, who went around the city enforcing the bandh, indulged in stone-throwing on shops which tried to defy the bandh call and the autorickshaws which ventured on the road.
At least two trucks and two autorickshaws were damaged in the stone-throwing in Nehru Gunj locality, Jagat Circle and near the city central bus stand. Almost all the shops, business establishments, hotels and petty shops downed their shutters. NEKRTC buses were off the road since morning and the government offices functioned with thin attendance. All petrol stations and some commercial banks were closed. The worst affected were those who came from other cities in trains and buses, who were stranded at he railway station and city central bus stand without any transport facility to reach their homes.
The police had a tough time in maintaining law and order with frenzied youths shouting slogans and brandishing clubs going about threatening petty shop owners who kept their establishments open in remote areas and autorikshaw drivers who defied the bandh call and took out their vehicles.
At least in two places, the police and the supporters of the bandh came to near blows. A section of the supporters of the bandh had a wordy duel with the police personnel on the Sharanabasaveshwar Temple Road near Anand Hotel and one of the office-bearers of the Bharatiya Janata Party Yuva Morcha was allegedly seen manhandling a police sub-inspector.
The city BJP Yuva Morcha leader Sharanu Sajjanshetty, who was allegedly involved in the incident of manhandling of the police official, who was picked up by the police in that connection, was later released after a large number of the supporters of the bandh mobbed the jeep in which Sajjanshetty was kept and forced the police to release him.
Senior leaders of the Veerashaiva community participated in the protest march from the Basaveshwar Statue to Deputy Commissioner’s office. Later they submitted a memorandum addressed to Chief Minister H.D. Kumaraswamy demanding a ban on the controversial book to Deputy Commissioner Pankajkumar Pandey.