Belagavi : Amidst the ongoing tension in Karnataka’s border town of Belagavi, miscreants vandalised a statue of local freedom fighter Sangolli Rayanna, the police said, adding that the incident came to light on Saturday.
The police are suspecting the role of the violent mob involved in the flash protest staged on Friday midnight against the desecration of a Shivaji statue in Bengaluru’s communally sensitive Shivajinagar locality.
The authorities have clamped prohibitory orders in Belagavi till Sunday 6 a.m.
Police sources said that the statue of Sangolli Rayanna installed at Kanakadasa colony has been uprooted. Its sword and shield were also broken and thrown away. However, after the locals came out on hearing the noise, the miscreants ran away.
Tilakawadi police rushed to the spot and have taken the idol into their custody.
The incident is likely to further fuel the tension in Belagavi. The incident is suspected to be a deliberate act to foment confrontation between the people of Kannadiga and Marathi communities.
Reacting to the situation, state Home Minister Araga Jnanendra said: “We will instill fear among the miscreants. You will see proper action by the police this time. There is no question of sparing anyone, there is going to be action against them. It is the handiwork of a few miscreants. We will tame them.”
The police have booked cases against over 100 agitators in connection with the incident of violence in the city at three police stations. The case has also been booked for creating disharmony on the basis of language along with other charges.
During the protest on Friday midnight, the demonstrators resorted to stone pelting targeting police personnel and government vehicles.
As many as 20 vehicles, including police jeeps, were damaged in the incident on Friday night, triggering the police to resort to lathi charge against the violent mob.
The winter session of Karnataka State Assembly is currently underway in the border after two years and the entire government machinery has been shifted from Bengaluru to Belagavi.
Karnataka police are suspecting the role of Maharashtra Ekikarana Samithi (MES) party leaders in creating disturbance during the session.