Abdul Rakeeb Zakir, former Congress Corporator from Pulikeshi Nagar ward, was arrested by the Central Crime Branch of Bengaluru Police. Sources at the CCB said that Zakir, who was absconding since October after his alleged involvement in the case, was arrested in an operation conducted in the early hours of Thursday. Zakir will be produced before a Magistrate and the CCB is likely to seek police custody for interrogation, sources told TNM.
Zakir and former Bengaluru Mayor Sampath Raj are two prime accused in the DJ Halli and KJ Halli violence case that took place on August 11, 2020. While Sampath Raj was arrested around 15 days ago the CCB was still on a lookout for Abdul Zakir.Sampath Raj is currently under judicial custody and is lodged in the Parappana Agrahara jain in Bengaluru.
"After we arrested Riyazuddin (on November 7), Zakir's aide, he had informed us that Sampath Raj and Zakir were hiding at a farmhouse in Nagarahole. By the time we reached the farmhouse both of them had fled the place," a CCB source said.
CCB sources said that Abdul Zakir was allegedly involved in the incident where Pulakeshinagar Congress MLA Akhanda Srinivas Murthy's house was set on fire.
A crowd of at least 2000 people, reportedly enraged over a derogatory post about Prophet Muhammad by his nephew Naveen Kumar, had set the MLA and his sister’s house ablaze. The incident left four people dead and over 60 police personnel injured.
The Revenue Minister of Karnataka, R. Ashoka had said that the mob had “plans to move to Shivajinagar” and had “everything they needed to create violence”.
The NIA began investigating the case following orders from the Ministry of Home Affairs. NIA found airguns, pellets, sharp weapons and many Social Democratic Party of India (SDPI) and Popular Front of India (PFI) related incriminating documents.