M'luru firing: probing officer seeks 2 more months to submit report

Source: DHNS | Published on 4th July 2020, 7:57 PM | Coastal News | Don't Miss |

MANGALURU: The magisterial probe into police firing against anti-CAA protestors in Mangaluru on December 19 appears to be progressing at a snail's pace, as the enquiry officer has now sought an additional two months to submit the report.

Two persons - Nausheen (23) and Jaleel (49) - were killed after police opened fire at civilians in the coastal city during widespread protests against the controversial Citizenship Amendment Act in December. While police had claimed that the firing was to prevent protesters from gheraoing a police station and setting it on fire, JD(S) leader HD Kumaraswamy had released videos alleging high-handedness and indiscriminate firing by the police.

While the report was expected to be submitted by March 23, enquiry officer G Jagadeesha,  deputy commissioner, Udupi district, had sought an extension by a month till April 23.

Speaking to DH, Jagadeesha said that the report is yet to be submitted. "The last date for submission was extended till June 23. But, due to Covid pandemic, the report is not yet complete. So, I have sought an additional two months to submit it," he said.

The magisterial probe along with a CID inquiry was ordered by Chief Minister B S Yediyurappa in December. Yediyurappa, who had assured Rs 10 lakh compensation to families of victims, subsequently reversed his stance. The CID, which filed a charge sheet a month ago, named both the decease as accused in the case.

A People's Tribunal, under retired Supreme Court judge Justice V Gopala Gowda, in its report on the incident had accused police of 'indiscriminate lathi charge and firing', 'communal slurs' aimed at provoking protestors, 'use of teargas shells within hospital premises', among others during the violence that hit parts of Mangaluru on December 19.

No case against cops

Zeeshan Ali, an advocate from Mangaluru, said that almost seven months after the incident, police are yet to register FIRs on the cases filed against policemen behind the firing.

"Responding to a petition, the High Court had granted bail to civilians imprisoned in the case and directed authorities to file complaints against policemen. But, the state appealed in Supreme Court and succeeded in getting an interim stay," he said.

As a result, 20 of the 23 accused - who had no prior criminal history but are named in multiple FIRs - were denied bail at the last moment, he added.

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