KARNATAKA

19 acquitted in Kateel assault case

MANGALORE, NOV. 29. The Judicial Magistrate First Class, Second Court judge, Vela D.K., on Monday acquitted 19 persons accused of assaulting Kamaladevi Prasad Asranna, a priest at Sri Durgaparameshwari, Kateel, during the annual festival on April 19, 2000. Mr. Prasad had filed a complaint before the Bajpe police station in this regard following the incident.

Counsel appearing on behalf of the accused, Karthik Udupa, said that his clients were booked under sections 143, 147, 341, 323 read with section 149 of Indian Penal Code in the case. The court examined eight witnesses during the course of the hearing. Technical defects in filing of the first information report, chargesheets and investigations led to the acquittal, he said.

The accused, Ishwar Kateel, A.K. Prasad, Nanda Kumar, Sanjeeva Madivala, Durga Prakash, Bhuvanabhiram Udupa, Venkatraj Udupa, Lakshminarayana Asranna, K. Vittal Shetty, Nalin Kumar, Dayananda Shetty, managing trustee of the temple, Lokesh, K. Sadananda Shetty, Sai Manohar Sheka, Ramdas Udupa, Krishnamoorthy Udupa, Surendra Rao, D.N. Prakash and Vadiraj Bhat, had pleaded not guilty to the charges against them.

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