One of the accused who attacked farmer leader Rakesh Tikait on May 30 was a murder convict released from jail for good conduct, a police officer said on Wednesday, June 1. The attack on the farmer leader at an event in Bengaluru drew widespread condemnation from various quarters.
"Shivakumar Atri (52) is a murder convict, who was released from the Hassan jail in 2015 for his good conduct," Deputy Commissioner of Police (Crime) Sharanappa S D told PTI. He added that investigation is on to ascertain the accused persons' antecedents and their connections to find out those who might have instigated them to attack Tikait.
The three accused in the ink attack case have been taken into police custody for further investigation in the case. On May 30, three accused posing as journalists entered Gandhi Bhavan where Tikait was holding a press conference.
In the meeting, the miscreants appeared in the crowd posing as journalists and pretended to take notes. One of them went on the stage apparently to adjust the microphone in front of Tikait and then tried to attack him with the mic. Another person threw ink on Tikait that stained his turban, face, white kurta, and green shawl worn around his neck.
Tikait termed it an act in connivance with the state government and claimed there was attempt to eliminate him.
The state Congress alleged that the BJP was behind the incident, which the state Home Minister Araga Jnanendra dismissed by saying those involved were not associated with the ruling party.
Farm organisations across the country on Tuesday staged protests against the attack on farmer leader Rakesh Tikait, the Samyukta Kisan Morcha has said. In Karnataka, farm organisations held protests in Bengaluru, Chikkaballapura, Chamarajanagar, Sagar, among several other places, a statement from SKM said.
Prime accused Bharat Shetty has been pictured with several BJP leaders, including former Karnataka Chief Minister B S Yeddiyurappa, the SKM said. The attackers were raising slogans of "Jai Modi (prime minister)" and "Modi, Modi", it further said.