Popular lawyer and activist Ajit Nayak was murdered on Friday night in Dandeli, a small town in Uttara Kannada. His murder has triggered demonstrations and protests in Dandeli and nearby towns.
As news of Ajit's murder spread, many people gathered at the hospital in solidarity where his body was kept on Saturday. The killing also drew reactions from members of bar associations in nearby Sirsi and Karwar, with many members boycotting court proceedings on Saturday.
Ajit, who was very vocal about various environmental causes like the rejuvenation of the Kali River, was returning home from his office in JN Road at around 9:30 pm when he was attacked by an unknown number of assailants, who used sharp weapons to hack at him. At this point, the police suspect his activism to be the cause of the attack.
He sustained injuries on the left side of his head and on his ear, and was rushed to a nearby hospital by passers-by. However, he succumbed to his injuries on the way and doctors declared that he was brought dead. Meanwhile, the attackers fled the spot immediately.
Ajit was the president of the Dandeli Taluk Horata Samiti and an active campaigner in the Kali Bachao Andolan, a movement to safeguard the Kali River from damming, industrial pollution and rampant sand mining. Ajit was also worked as the president of the Dandeli Block Congress Committee for some time.
He was also vocal in the implementation of the Real Estate Regulatory Authority reforms in Karnataka and various other causes like anti-corruption.
While Deputy Superintendent of Police Mohan Prasad and inspector Aneesh Mujawar visited the scene of crime, police officials investigating the case said that they are yet to find leads in the case.
A case has been registered in Dandeli Town Police station. Besides Mohan Prasad and Aneesh Mujawar, Sub-inspector Ullas Parmar is also in charge of the investigation.