Karnataka sedition case: fireworks over cricket loss or hockey win ?

The parents of the arrested youths, including Hosakote gram panchayat vice president K M Musthafa, have claimed that the firecrackers were set off to celebrate India’s hockey victory over Pakistan.

Written by Santosh Kumar R B | Suntikoppa (kodagu) | Updated: June 26, 2017 10:39 am
 karnataka sedition case, pakistan victory celebration, india-pakistan cricket match,icc champions trophy, suntikoppa, muslim youths arrested, karnataka news, indian express Representational Image

WERE THE firecrackers that were lit in Hosakote village of Karnataka’s Kodagu district on June 18 meant to celebrate Pakistan’s victory over India in the final of the ICC Champions Trophy in London, or India’s victory over Pakistan in the Hockey World League in the same city the same day?

This is the question that police in Suntikoppa region of Kodagu, 270 km from Bengaluru, face after jailing four Muslim youths from Hosakote on charges of outraging religious feelings and sedition on the basis of a complaint by a local BJP leader.

The events of the night of June 18, which led to the arrest of Riyaz Mustafa, 21, and his friends K L Muneer, 25, Jaheed, 30, and Abdul Samad, 32, have shattered the fragile peace of the village in a district where communal passions run high and Hindutva forces are dominant politically.

The parents of the arrested youths, including Hosakote gram panchayat vice president K M Musthafa, have claimed that the firecrackers were set off to celebrate India’s hockey victory over Pakistan. But police have registered a case under IPC section 295A for outraging religious feelings and arrested the youths on June 19 on the basis of a complaint filed by BJP leader D B Changappa, who claimed to have seen them set off crackers.

Based on assertions by the BJP leader and others in the village that the youths were shouting pro-Pakistan slogans while lighting the crackers, police added the sedition section, IPC 124A, to the complaint on June 21.

Musthafa, father of Riyaz, claimed that the complaint was “politically motivated” and an “act of vengeance” since he had cracked down on a factory run by the BJP leader recently.

“There has been some misunderstanding. Our children were not celebrating Pakistan’s victory against India in the cricket match. They told me they were celebrating India’s win over Pakistan in hockey, which happened at the same time,” Musthafa said. His claim was echoed by Lathif Khan, a local trader and father of another arrested youth Muneer.

Musthafa also said that his son was not at the spot that night. “My son had gone to neighbouring Kushalanagar town to drop my sister and came to home at 10.30 pm. He went to the spot after he got a call from his friends. He stayed at the masjid that night since it is Ramzan. But my son was named as accused no. 1. This shows he has been framed due to political rivalry,” Musthafa alleged.

Musthafa said Changappa was his opponent in several local elections. “As vice president of the gram panchayat, I told the Panchayat Development Officer to issue notices to him for dust pollution from his brick factory. He fixed my son and others in the case to get back at me,” Mustafa alleged.

Changappa, however, claimed that he filed the complaint to “teach the youths what would happen if someone disrespects India”. “I don’t have any personal rivalry against them. I was watching TV and my wife informed me that somebody was lighting firecrackers at the village circle, which can be seen from the terrace of my house. I rushed to the terrace and heard the sound of firecrackers. I shouted at them to stop and they left the place in their vehicles,” Changappa claimed.

“I didn’t know who they were but I learnt their identities when I made enquiries. I called police and informed them of the incident,’’ he said. The BJP leader also claimed that there were “no problems” with his brick unit and that he obtained all “necessary permission 10 years ago’’.

When contacted, Kodagu SP P Rajendra Prasad said, “When the youths were first arrested, they did not state they were celebrating the hockey victory and not the cricket loss. We are investigating the case in a fair manner.”

For all the latest India News, download Indian Express App

  1. K
    Jun 26, 2017 at 11:03 am
    How rediculous this news sounds? That shows how worse the Indian law and order machinery is. Sedition? Hurting religious sentiments ? BTY if hindu is a way of life which religious sentiments were hurt then?
    1. S
      Jun 26, 2017 at 10:43 am
      Nothing but twisting of facts by media spinners. They are following foot steps of Pakistan. To indulge in wrong activities and then put denial.
      1. F
        Fck Allah
        Jun 26, 2017 at 9:48 am
        If they are Muslims, definitely they were bursting fire crackers for India ( Hindu) loss in cricket than india win in hockey. 100 percent I am true. Muslims don't show love for country so no question of bursting fire crackers for hockey India win by them. Media is pure evil trying to protect terrorists only because they are muslims
        1. C
          Jun 26, 2017 at 9:59 am
          When you know you cannot do anything than why barking.??
          1. K
            Jun 26, 2017 at 12:15 pm
            Hindus will come back, just wait and see, you may be in your thirties , just wait for 25 years more, you will see your own family butchered in front of your eyes, just read about Hindu genocide in 1947 par ion, same thing will repeat with you guys ,this time in india and you guys will be in the receiving end, its a matter of petrol , the day world do not depend on petrol , Muslims will be on free run, enjoy your remaining days
        2. M
          Madarchod mohamnad
          Jun 26, 2017 at 9:41 am
          We never know how much these traitors love hockey ? Ask them to name one of the players, they will probably fail . It is clearly radicalisation and Islamisation .See what happens to left ruled Kerala ? It's a no go zone even for police men . Times now TV has made a sting operation.
          1. C
            Jun 26, 2017 at 10:02 am
            1.3 billion people cannot stop some 1000 kashmiri Muslim for cheering Pakstn win than how could you stop 300 million Muslim in India. So stop criticizing and celebrate Eid. The biggest festival of India.
          2. S
            Shafted mohammed
            Jun 26, 2017 at 9:29 am
            How much is the love of these traitors in hockey everyone knows and and how much these traitors would have celebrated on a hockey win. These traitors celebrate the Indian team loss in cricket and must be immediately sent to their jannat that is Pakistan then they would understand what love and respect they are getting in Pakistan.
            1. C
              Jun 26, 2017 at 10:04 am
              Instead of sending Muslims to Pakstn. Hindus can Go to Andaman and Nikobar island.
            2. R
              Jun 26, 2017 at 7:39 am
              We see British Indians, Australian Indians, NZ Indians cheering when India wins against the countries they live and eat the fat of the land. I hope they will not be slapped with sedation, and sent back to where they came from. Govindha Govindha
              1. N
                Niladrinath Mohanty
                Jun 26, 2017 at 8:07 am
                You imply that if one celebrates victory of Pakistan it is OK. Strange logic by you.
                1. S
                  Sudarshan Nityananda
                  Jun 26, 2017 at 9:29 am
                  Because we don't have a state of Emergency or state of war, it appears that celebrating another nation's victory cannot be against any law, even though cheering Pak may be found objectionable by some. Virat Kohli gave some handsome compliments to Pak in full public view. In which jail do you want to place him ?
                  1. R
                    Roby Mani
                    Jun 26, 2017 at 11:11 am
                    Please quote a law which prevents us from cheering a side. which we see is playing well. What is the basis for you stating that i must not cheer for Pakistan or any other nation which i feel is worthy of it. You may not cheer, but that does not mean that another person cannot cheer.
                  2. S
                    Shyam Mohan
                    Jun 26, 2017 at 6:18 pm
                    Lets see what will happen when people wearing uniforms cheer Hitler and wave flags
                    1. M
                      Jun 27, 2017 at 4:36 pm
                      Because those indians are not citizens of whatever country you mentioned, and were not born there. The indian orgins who are born there definitely cheer the host country. Here, the ones who are born here are celebrating the loss of India. So understand the difference.
                    2. Load More Comments