Speedy probe into the case of hoisting of the Pakistan national flag in a small town in the northern Karnataka district of Bijapur on New Years night has defused a communal situation that had arisen in the region.
The Bijapur police on Wednesday announced the arrest of six youths all members of the right wing Hindu group Sree Ram Sene for hoisting Pakistans flag at the office of the tahsildar of Sindhagi town on January 1.
Superintendent of Police,Bijapur,D C Rajappa,who announced the arrests,said it was carried out by a group of young college students affiliated to the Sree Ram Sene. The group was trying to create communal trouble in order to expand its support base,police sources said.
The arrested youths were identified as Rakesh Sidaramaiah Math (19),Mallanagouda Vijaykumar Patil (18),Parashuram Ashok Waghmore (20),Rohit Eshwar Navi (18),Sunil Madiwalappa Agasar (18) and Anilkumar Sriram Solankar (18),all from Sindhagi. The seventh accused,Arun Waghmore,is on the run,the police said.
The hoisting of the flag had resulted in tension in the area and right wing Hindu groups such as the Bajrang Dal,Vishwa Hindu Parishad and Sree Ram Sene itself,called for a shutdown on Monday in protest.
Leads in the case emerged after the police received information on the registration number of a motorcycle that was parked on the tahsildars office campus on January 1 and this was developed using techniques such as mobile phone signatures as well as interrogation,police sources said.
Following the discovery of the flag on January 1,groups of youth from Hindu groups had gathered in the town and stoned police vehicles and burned rubber tyres. The police had to resort to lathicharge to quell a procession of protesters.
The Bijapur SP said the Pakistan flag was made by the Sree Ram Sene activists at the home of one of the accused,Sunil Madiwalappa Agasar.
Sree Ram Senes founder Pramod Muttalik,however,claimed the arrested youths were not members of his outfit and said the organisation would carry out its own probe to identify the real culprits behind the incident.