Offensive songs played before Kalaburagi mosque during Ganesh visarjan, 3 booked

Similar incidents happened during the Ram Navami festival earlier this year, with the police attempting a cover-up.

ByBellie Thomas

Published Sep 13, 2022 | 8:05 PM Updated Sep 13, 2022 | 8:05 PM

Ganesha Festival

The police have filed a complaint against the organisers of a Ganesh Chaturthi mandali in Kalaburagi town in Karnataka for allegedly trying to disturb communal peace on Saturday, 10 August.

According to the FIR, the organisers played communally sensitive songs over loudspeakers when their Ganesh Visarjan procession — for the immersion of the idol at a local lake — passed the mosque, the Mahibas Masjid.

Police personnel on duty near the mosque asked the revellers to stop playing the song, but were ignored, tthe complaint added.

Following this, the FIR was lodged under Section 188 of the Indian Penal Code, which pertains to “disobedience to order duly promulgated by public servant”, and Section 295A, which covers “deliberate and malicious acts intended to outrage religious feelings …by insulting religion or religious beliefs”.

Among the three people named in the FIR is the person who supplied the audio equipment, Saleem.

“We don’t know if Saleem was present at the time of the incident, but we are still inquiring into it,” Kalaburagi Police Commissioner YS Ravikumar told South First.

The other two named in the FIR are Tukaram Mahendrekar, the person in charge of the Ganesh Visarjan Mandali, and an associate of his named Ambresh Bhovi.

The maximum sentence for this offence is a jail term for four years, Ravikumar said.

The mosque authorities have not issued any statement.

Incidents in the past

This is not the first time that such communally offensive songs are being played in front of the same mosque in Kalaburagi. Similar instances have taken place in the past too, during the Ram Navami festivities in April this year.

However, after a video of the instance during the Ram Navami festivities went viral, the Kalaburagi police tried to cover up the incident stating the video was unverified and it could be an old one.

Several pro-Hindu organisations had at that time taken out Shobhayatras (processions) sporting saffron shawls, loud music systems playing songs that had communally offensive lyrics.

The Shobhayatras stopped in front of mosques at several places even in Bengaluru, and in some instances it even clashed with the time of the evening prayers in the ongoing month of Ramzan.

FIR this time

“However, this time, we (the city police) were witness to the incident in Kalaburagi and we have taken up a case suo-motu and are investigating,” said a senior police officer.

The complaint said the song lyrics had the following lines: “Idhar uthi jo aankh tumari, chamkega talwar hamari, khun se is darthi ko nehaladhenge hum. Hum thumko tumarhe aukath dikhadhenge (When you look this side, our swords will shine. We will drench this land in blood, and we will show you your place).”

The three people named in the FIR have, however, not been arrested as yet.