The Mangaluru cops extended Prohibitory Orders until 29 December over the murder of the 43-year-old Muslim shopkeeper in Surathkal.
Several Muslim outfits, including the Karnataka Muslim Jamaat (KMJ), Sunni Yojana Sangha (SYS), and Sunni Students Federation (SFS), gathered in large numbers at the Clock Tower in Mangaluru on Tuesday, 27 December, and protested against the murder of 43-year-old shopkeeper Abdul Jaleel.
KMJ state committee member Ashraf Kinara told South First that two murders took place when Karnataka Chief Minister Basavaraj Bommai was in Dakshina Kannada district.
“There are seven ministers (MLAs) in the district and none visited the houses of the deceased Mohammed Masood and Mohammed Fazil or the recent victim Abdul Jaleel. They are not ministers only for a particular community. They are ministers for all people in the district, and they cannot target one community to do politics,” said Kinara.
“I have witnessed at least eight-nine moral-policing incidents. The police will not take up a case against the moral-policing goons who are destroying the future of Muslim youths,” Kinara said.
There were thousands of minority-community members that gathered and agitated against the recent murder of Abdul Jaleel.
As the Prohibitory Orders, which were clamped and extended, were limited to only four police jurisdictions, these Muslim outfits managed to obtain permission from the police for agitation and addressed a large number of their community members on Tuesday.
The Mangaluru police extended the Prohibitory Orders imposed at four police jurisdictions in the Mangaluru City Police Commissionerate in Dakshina Kannada district till 6 am on 29 December in connection with the murder of Abdul Jaleel in Surathkal late last week.
The clampdown under Section 144 of the Criminal Procedure Code (CrPC) was initially imposed in Surathkal, Bajpe, Kavoor, and Panambur police station limits until 26 December.
The clampdown prohibits the assembly of five or more persons, holding of public meetings, processions, and the carrying of firearms, explosives, and crackers.
Shouting provocative slogans and any activities that hurt the sentiments of different sections of society have also been prohibited.
Adbul Jaleel, a resident of Krishnapura, was stabbed to death by a gang of miscreants on Saturday night, triggering tensions in the communally sensitive coastal district.
Though the cops arrested four persons — including the two assailants who allegedly stabbed him to death— in connection with the murder, the region continues to simmer, police sources told South First.
The arrested people have been identified as Shailesh Poojari (21), a resident of Krishnapura; Savin Kanchan alias Munna (24), from Hejamadi near Udupi; and Pavan alias Paachu (23), and Lakshmi Devadiga (28) from Katipalla.
Shailesh and Savin are directly involved in the crime, while Pavan helped the two escape on his bike, said the police sources.
Shailesh and Savin are rowdy sheeters and have other criminal cases — including attempt-to-murder and some under the Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances Act — pending against them, they added.
The police investigation revealed that Jaleel was murdered because of an illicit relationship with a woman in the neighbourhood.
According to the police, Jaleel owned a fancy store, and he was in an illicit affair with a woman — a resident of Surathkal — over the past eight years.
They were earlier caught red-handed at his shop by a neighbour who knew both of them. A local resident had even warned him not to continue the affair with the woman.
The police are still on the lookout for the person who appeared to have planned the murder. The cops are also questioning a dozen others in connection with the crime.
On Saturday, the accused barged into Jaleel’s shop and threatened him, as he had continued his illicit affair with the woman.
Jaleel was stabbed to death the same night, the police sources added.
A large number of people attended his funeral, leading the police to clamp Prohibitory Orders in the region.
The murder took a communal colour within no time, and the case was brought up for discussion on Monday in the Karnataka Assembly in Belagavi by the Congress.
Senior Congress leaders tried to pin down the ruling BJP government for adopting discriminatory approaches to murders where Muslims were victims and Hindus were the accused.
The Congress leaders also asked why the police department was not invoking the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act or UAPA against the accused and not talking about seizing the properties of the accused persons.
Opposition leader Siddaramaiah questioned the government on invoking the UAPA selectively.
“The government invokes the UAPA on a few people, but it does not apply to others. In the Abdul Jaleel murder case, the government has to invoke the UAPA on the accused,” he demanded.
Replying to this, Karnataka Law Minister JC Madhuswamy said: “The government cannot decide which Indian Penal Code (IPC) section has to be put on criminals. It is the cops that decide on sections that have to be invoked against criminals.”
Siddaramaiah and deputy Opposition leader and MLA UT Khader highlighted the difference in behaviour by the state government when providing compensation to victims’ families based on their religion in the coastal region.
The state government differentiates while providing compensation in these cases, they alleged.
“If murder is reported on one side (referring to Hindus), the government gives compensation to them. But when Muslims are killed, the government does not provide any kind of compensation to the victim’s family,” pointed out Siddaramaiah.
“It is government money. I do not oppose the compensation given to others, but why is the government not giving compensation to Muslims?” asked the Opposition leader.
Reacting to this, Madhuswamy said: “We cannot give compensation to all the criminals. Victims are different from criminals. The government will compensate the victims but somebody who has been involved in criminal activities cannot be given compensation.”
(With inputs from Mahesh Goudar and PTI)