Prakash told The News Minute that he had called Sharan as a ‘personal favour’ to the MLA in question.

Did BJP MLA want Bengaluru journalist to withdraw assault case against police
news Monday, April 25, 2016 - 15:51

Days after a journalist with a Kannada news channel was allegedly assaulted by the police, the case has a taken a twist with a BJP MLA allegedly approaching the journalist through an intermediary, to get the complaint withdrawn. The MLA has denied it.

Journalist, Sharan Gurikar, who was covering the protests by garment workers in Bengaluru, was allegedly assaulted by the police and subsequently filed a complaint at the Mico Layout police station against five police personnel of the Hulimavu station.

On Sunday, the case took a different turn with BJP Spokesperson S Prakash approaching Sharan on behalf of a Bengaluru BJP MLA, and telling the journalist that the MLA wanted the case withdrawn.

Sharan told The News Minute that he had got two calls from Prakash on Sunday afternoon. 

"When he called me first, he said that he was from the BJP and asked me to withdraw the cases against the Hulimavu police personnel. I asked him why, and he said it was on a request of MLA Bengaluru South M Krishnappa. I told him that they assaulted me during the PF protest, after which he told me that he will call in a while and hung up on me," Sharan said. 

"When the person called me later, he apologised saying that he asked me to do so not knowing that I was assaulted by the accused," he said. It was then that he asked for the man’s name, and learned that it was Prakash, the state BJP spokesperson.

Read:  Apology for assault is unacceptable, says Bengaluru journalist allegedly beaten up by police

Prakash told The News Minute that he had called Sharan as a ‘personal favour’ to the MLA in question. 

"I had called Sharan not knowing the background of the case. I was told by the MLA that the case against the Hulimavu police wasn't a genuine one. However, the minute I got to know that he was assaulted by them, I called the journalist back to apologise and asked him to go ahead with the case," he said. 

When contacted, Krishnappa denied having asked anyone to urge “anyone” to withdraw the case. “I’m busy with my own work, why would I ask anyone to withdraw any case?” Krishnappa said.

​While the MLA has denied it, Prakash was in for some major embarrassment when word spread on a journalist group that he had approached Sharan with such a request. In the group too, Prakash faced questions from journalists who demanded an answer. In the messages circulated within the group too, Prakash did not deny that he had made such a request. However, he told journalists that he did not know that Sharan had been assaulted by the police, after which he apologised to Sharan.

 

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