The Central Crime Branch probing the violence that took place in Bengaluruâ€™s DJ Halli and KG Halli areas in August has named former Mayor and sitting Congress corporator R Sampath Raj, as one of the accused in the case, police said on Tuesday. "He (Sampath Raj) has been named as one of the accused in the DJ halli and KG halli violence," a top police officer investigating the cases said.
According to the official, Sampath was among those who had information about the violence and did not share it with the police. Police had questioned him twice for several hours along with Pulakeshinagar Congress corporator Abdul Rakeeb Zakir, but have not arrested them yet. Sampath Raj's personal assistant Arun Kumar was arrested earlier for allegedly remaining in touch with people involved in the violence.
On August 11, a large mob launched attacks on a police station and the residence of Congress MLA R Akhanda Srinivasa Murthy after an inflammatory social media post by the relative of the legislator. The mob approached the DJ Halli police station seeking a case to be registered against the relative Naveen but were enraged after the police did not immediately take up the complaint.
The violence, which began late on August 11, died down in the early hours of August 12 after the intervention of senior Congress leaders. The irate mob set the basement of the DJ Halli police station on fire and vandalised the station. The vandals set vehicles on fire outside the station. At the time, police had opened fire, killing three people on the spot while another person involved in the violence died a few days later.
So far, over 300 people have been arrested, including Social Democratic Party of India (SDPI) leader Muzammil Pasha who initially approached the police with a complaint against Naveen. The National Investigation Agency is also investigating the matter and has nabbed the prime accused of the case.
Home Minister Basavaraj Bommai had claimed that an internal strife in the Congress coupled with the upcoming city corporation elections for the Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) had resulted in the violence in Pulakeshinagar.
Refuting Bommai's statement, state Congress chief DK Shivakumar had charged the government with trying to 'cover up' its failure to prevent the riots by giving misleading statements.