Homestay attack backed by top RSS leaders

The July 28 attack on a Mangalore homestay, on the lines of previous ones, took place due to the local Hindu right-wing’s disapproval of the pub-culture in the city and the suspicion that young boys were misleading girls.

The attack was carried out by Hindu Jagaran Vedike workers who were not named in a report filed by the Karnataka State Commission for Women. Local Janata Dal (S) and Congress leaders blamed RSS and BJP strongmen for protecting and egging the workers on. They also pointed out that the report filed mentioned that cannabis was found on the premises while the police probe revealed that only beer bottles were recovered.

Meanwhile, in a letter signed by representatives of 15 women’s rights and human rights organisations demanding withdrawal of the report, activists said they felt “betrayed” by C. Manjula’s “hard-line stance” of pointing a finger at the use of alcohol and drugs playing a role in provoking the attack and failing to name the assaulters in her report.

“An independent probe is required because the commission has become an extended wing of the BJP,” Sadhana Rao, convenor, Centre for Women’s Rights said.

The man blamed for the rogue behaviour of the party workers, Prabhakar Bhat Kalladka, is believed to exercise great muscle-power in the administrative and political circles not just in Mangalore but also in neighboring areas, deciding on candidates for ministerial berths and providing local leadership to Bajrang Dal, Sri Ram Sene and the Hindu Jagran Vedike ever since the BJP came to power in 2008.

Aaliya Khan

This article appeared in The Milli Gazette print issue of 16-30 September 2012 on page no. 7

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