On Monday (August 15), the Karnataka Police imposed prohibitory orders in the state’s Shivamogga district as communal tensions flared up after a group of Muslim youths removed the flex banner with the image of Veer Savarkar. Savarkar’s poster was put up as part of Independence Day celebrations and the Muslim youths tried to replace it with that of the Islamic tyrant Tipu Sultan. The incident happened at the Ameer Ahmed circle in the Shivamogga district in Karnataka.
Shivamogga, Karnataka | Section 144 of the CrPC imposed after a group of Tipu Sultan followers tried to remove banners of VD Savarkar to install Tipu Sultan's banners in the Ameer Ahmad circle of the city. Mild lathi charge used by police. Situation tense: Shivamogga Police
— ANI (@ANI) August 15, 2022
Additionally, two men identified as Praveen Singh and Prem Singh were also stabbed by unidentified miscreants in two different places in the city. The former was stabbed in Ashok Nagar by bike-borne youths on his way home from Gandhi Bazar after shutting his shop, while another youth was stabbed in Upparakeri. Police are trying to ascertain whether these two incidents are linked to the Veer Savarkar flex banner controversy.
According to the Karnataka home minister, the stabbing incident was likely linked to the ongoing Savarkar poster row in Shivamogga. Speaking to India Today, the minister said, “One stabbing incident has happened in Shivamogga is what I’m told. Is it regarding the Savarkar photo issue, it seems like it. But yet to get full details.”
However, to avoid any further escalation, the police have imposed Section 144 in parts of the Shivamogga district, and shops have downed their shutters.
“We have imposed Section 144. Tension flared and so we resorted to lathicharge. We have tried to dismiss the crowd. We are verifying if he was stabbed over the same issue,” said Laxmi Prasad, a senior police officer in the area.
According to reports, on Monday, as part of India’s 75th Independence day celebration, a Hindu group placed Veer Savarkar’s poster at the Ameer Ahmed circle in Shivamogga. Tension erupted after a group of Muslim youths reached the circle and not only objected to the placement of Savarkar’s poster there but tried to remove it and replace it with that of Tipu Sultan.
This led to a verbal, and then physical altercation between the two groups. As the news spread, Superintendent of Police BM Laxmi Prasad and other senior police officials rushed to the spot to bring the situation under control. Fearing an escalation, the police used a mild lathi charge to disperse the crowd. They also detained those who removed Savarkar’s flex. Hindu youths tried to put up the banner again at the circle but the police denied permission. Police also onfiscated the flex banner of Veer Savarkar.
In Karnataka's #Shivamogga, Some Hindu organization put a picture of #VeerSavarkar on the Ameer Ahmed Circle of the city, after some time some Muslim youths reached there with the flag of #TipuSultan and started trying to remove the picture of Veer Savarkar. pic.twitter.com/jIcV6KaoLr
— Siraj Noorani (@sirajnoorani) August 15, 2022
Members of Vishwa Hindu Parishad and Bajrang Dal staged a flash protest demanding to allow them to put up Veer Savarkar’s poster, but the police managed to bring the situation under control and dispersed the crowd.
To pacify the situation police put up the Tricolour in place of Veer Savarkar’s poster.
Amidst the ruckus, news emerged that the two youths namely, Praveen and Prem Singh were stabbed. The police are now investigating whether there is any link between the two incidents.