Bengaluru, Jan 23, 2020: An incident to spread terror has taken political colour in Karnataka, with the three main parties of the state entering a blame game two days after a bag containing a low intensity bomb was found in the premises of Mangaluru International Airport.
Though the bomb was defused without any hitch, the incident has sparked off a political slugfest in the state with political party leaders speculating the role of ‘jihadi elements’ even before the police could make any progress in the case.
Aditya Rao, the main suspect in the Mangaluru International Airport, on Wednesday surrendered before the Bengaluru police for the bomb scare incident on Monday.
“The BJP may not be happy with this news. They would have preferred it a surname other than Rao," Dinesh Gundu Rao, the acting state Congress president said on Wednesday.
Former Karnataka chief minister H.D.Kumaraswamy and Janata Dal (Secular) or JD(S) leader said that since the suspect turned out to be a non-muslim, everyone was quiet.
“That muslims only become terrorist is not the case anymore. They (BJP) have given rise to a situation where even those from the Hindu community can become terrorists," he added.
The statements gaining significance as most right wing organisations had suspected the handiwork of muslim radicals in the bomb scare incident as a backlash to disrupt peace and protest against the contentious Citizenship (Amendment) Act (CAA) and National Register of Citizens (NRC).
Two people died when police and protesters clashed in the communally sensitive coastal district of Mangaluru on 19 December. The incident in Mangaluru feeding existing tensions as protests against CAA and NRC refusing to die down. Unsavoury and provocative statements by several senior leaders in the government hasn’t helped the situation either.
Kumaraswamy tore into the B.S.Yediyurappa-led BJP government for misusing police officials to further its own agenda.
“In this government some officials are being misused and being used to create discord within the society," Kumaraswamy said in Bengaluru.
He said that some of these officials were carrying out works to ‘impress’ the government, trying to add communal colour to most issues.
The People’s Tribunal, a civil society initiative tasked with conducting public hearings on Tuesday came down heavily on the police stating that prohibitory orders in the city on 19 December was unwarranted and it was not communicated to the residents properly. The three member tribunal said that innocent bystanders were caught in the clash and also said that police personnel had used “communal slurs and used deplorable language" to provoke protesters.
Kumaraswamy said that the Yediyurappa government is yet to place the facts of what the suspicious bag contained, the forces behind the act and falling short of calling the entire incident a farce.
“Our officials have worked meticulously and shows their honesty. so these unnecessary criticism of our officials, questioning their morality is not needed," Basavaraj Bommai, Karnataka’s home minister said on Wednesday.
Kumaraswamy said that Rao was qualified but was forced to work in a small hotel shows the level of unemployment in the country.
Chiding Prime Minister Narendra Modi, he said that there was no effort to tackle unemployment but instead focusing on CAA and NRC. “This is not our priority today," he said.