Nalin Kumar Kateel’s remark triggers row

January 01, 2017 10:16 pm | Updated 10:16 pm IST - MANGALURU:

Nalin Kumar Kateel, Dakshina Kannada MP, on Sunday stirred a controversy with his statement that BJP workers were capable of “setting the district on fire” if the police failed to arrest within 10 days the accused involved in the alleged murder of a BJP worker’s son in Konaje.

Addressing protesters at a rally near Konaje police station on outskirts of the city, Mr. Kateel said the local police were acting at the behest of a local Minster and were dragging their feet in arresting the accused. He claimed that the alleged murder was an act by terrorist groups from Kerala.

“If the police fail to arrest the accused in 10 days, then we are capable of setting the district on fire,” Mr. Kateel said. Karthik Raj (27), son of former Mangaluru Taluk Panchayat vice-president Umesh Ganiga, was allegedly murdered on October 23 last year.


Later, Mr. Kateel clarified to The Hindu that he did not intend to disturb peace in the district. “I wanted to say that people will be frustrated if the police fail to catch the culprits. In a hurry, I said we are capable of setting the district on fire,”he said, claiming that he was unwell and was not comfortable addressing the protesters. “I am here to maintain peace and not disturb,” he said.

DYFI condemned Mr. Kateel’s statement. DYFI Ullal zone secretary Jeevanraj Kuttar said Mr. Kateel’s statement had caused concern among people. Mr. Kuttar said Mr. Kateel should apologise in public for the statement.

DYFI activists will protest at Thokkottu junction on Monday seeking registration of a criminal case against Mr. Kateel.

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