Amid reports of the BJP high command’s directive to keep governance above ‘halal’ and ‘hijab’ issues, Karnataka CM Basavaraj Bommai said on Saturday that his government had nothing to do with the campaign calling for the banning of the Waqf Board.
Pramod Muthalik, head of Sri Rama Sene, had demanded that Karnataka ban the Waqf Board. Bommai said, “People practice their respective traditions. The government is run according to the laws. The government has nothing to do with these campaigns (which call for the Waqf Board to be banned). All are equal in the eyes of the government. Maintaining law and order is our goal.
Karnataka has recently seen several campaigns by right-wing Hindu groups, calling for a boycott of halal meat and a ban on Muslim traders at temple fairs.
On Wednesday, the Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) issued a circular prohibiting the slaughter of animals and the sale of meat on Ram Navami. A BBMP official said such an order is issued every year. “The sale of meat is banned at least eight times a year,” the official said.
Meanwhile, right-wing Hindu activists reportedly vandalized a fruit shop and handcarts belonging to Muslim fruit vendors near the Sri Nuggikeri Hanumantha Temple in the Dharwad region of the state on Saturday.
Nabisab, a watermelon trader, told the media: “About 8-10 people came and vandalized the whole store. They destroyed about five quintals of watermelons. I have been doing business in front of the temple for 15 years with no problem,” he said.
Dharward SP P Krishnakanth told The Indian Express that a case has been registered and investigations are ongoing.
Restraining orders after throwing stones during ‘shobha yatra’
Tension reigned in the Mulbagal area of Kolar district after stones were thrown during a ‘shobha yatra’ by Ram Navami on Friday night. Five people were arrested even as restraining orders were enforced, police officials said. The windshields of at least two cars were damaged in the incident, in addition to minor injuries to some youths, officials said, adding that a two-wheeler was also set on fire.
Kolar SP D Devaraj said, “As there was a blackout, the disbelievers may have taken advantage. We are studying this.