Mob storms Hebbagodi Police Station, ransacks premises, sets vehicles on fire

April 20, 2016 07:53 am | Updated September 08, 2016 10:21 pm IST - Bengaluru:Bengaluru:

A mob stormed a police station at Hebbagodi on Tuesday, beat up cops and set fire to vehicles in the premises on the second day of the protest against amendments to the EPF scheme led by garment workers. Two persons sustained suspected bullet injuries when the police opened fire in self-defence.

The mob ransacked the station while the overwhelmed police force were mute spectators. Nalinakshi, a constable, sustained severe head injuries in the melee.

The mob targeted the police station after cops caned and dispersed a mob that attacked the campus of biotech major Biocon. Around 11.30 a.m., a mob armed with clubs and stones barged into the Biocon office, beat up the security guards and set fire to the reception area. They damaged seven vehicles. Two employees were also beaten up before cops chased them away.

Earlier in the day, thousands of garment workers and others had gathered at various junctions off Hosur Road. They tried to block the highway, resulting in a traffic jam. When police caned the protesters, vehicles stranded in the jam became soft targets for mischief-mongers.

In north Bengaluru, the protest was led by workers of garment factories and other manufacturing units from Peenya Industrial Area. Protests were held at Gorguntepalya, Yeshwantpur, Dasarahalli and Jalahalli Cross. At each place, the protest turned violent when police tried to disperse the protesters.

Several policemen were injured at Dasarahalli junction.

Post afternoon, the protest at Jalahalli Cross suddenly turned violent. Some people set fire to buses following intense caning by the police. Eight buses and a police Hoysala vehicle were set afire in just 30 minutes. The police personnel at the spot were easily outnumbered and many cops were injured in the stone-pelting that followed.

Fire tenders could not reach the spot for over two hours as all roads leading to the junction were choked with traffic. Police reinforcements too were delayed for the same reason.

Major tragedy averted

The agitated crowd that stormed Hebbagodi Police Station set fire to over 20 vehicles parked in the compound. But a major tragedy was averted as the fire did not reach some LPG cylinders stocked in the compound. The police had recently seized illegal gas cylinders. Fire tenders were rushed to the spot and the fire was put out, a senior police officer said.

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