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Tension grips Shivamogga after clash over Savarkar and Tipu Sultan posters, Section 144 imposed

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Tension has gripped Karnataka’s Shivamogga district where a man was stabbed in a clash between two groups over a banner featuring the photo of Hindu ideologue Vinayak Damodar Savarkar.

Right-wing groups put up a poster of Veer Savarkar at the Ameer Ahmed Circle in Shivamogga on Monday. Another group objected as they wanted to install Tipu Sultan’s flex there. 

As a scuffle broke out, the police rushed to the spot and confiscated the posters. They also had to resort to mild lathicharge to bring the situation under control and disperse the crowd.

Prohibitory orders banning large gatherings have been imposed in the area and additional forces have been called in.

“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 said.

Three people were arrested by the Halasuru Gate police station in Bengaluru where a case was filed on August 14 under the Prevention of Insult to National Honour Act, 1971, and outraging of religious feelings (under Section 295A of the Indian Penal Code or IPC) over the alleged vandalism of a flex board image of Tipu Sultan put up at Nripatunga Road in Hudson Circle installed as part of the Congress `Freedom Walk` program on August 15.

The complaint was made by the Rajajinagar Congress party functionary Manjunath, police said.Those arrested include Puneeth Kerehalli, president of an organization named Rastra Rakshana Pade, for allegedly tearing up the Tipu Sultan flex. 

Karnataka Pradesh Congress Chief DK Shivakumar visited the incident site and said, “Someone is trying to create disturbance in the state. They are not able to digest Congress’ ‘Freedom March'”.

The State Congress had also reacted to the issue of dropping of Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru`s photo from government advertisements. 

Karnataka Pradesh Congress Committee President DK Shivakumar on Sunday demanded an apology from the Karnataka government for ignoring former Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru in the state government`s advertisement for the `Har Ghar Tiranga` campaign. He also demanded an apology from the Karnataka CM. 

“Insulting freedom fighter Jawaharlal Nehru in an advertisement made from common people`s taxes is intolerable. The Chief Minister should apologize to the people of the state for insulting Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru,” said Siddaramaiah. 

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