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Mysore clashes: Karnataka HC orders release of PFI activists

By Najiya O., TwoCircles.net,

Kochi: The Karnataka High Court yesterday ordered the release of about 100 people, mostly Popular Front of India activists, arrested in connection with the Mysore clashes and post-clash demonstrations. The division bench comprising Justices V Goplalagowda and K Bhakthavatsala gave the order on hearing a habeas corpus petition by Noorjahan, the relative of a detainee.

The people, including the activists of the Popular Front of India, were arrested when they organised a protest rally in Mysore. Prohibitory orders were in force when the rally was held. The police lathicharged and arrested the peaceful protestors and, reportedly, denied bail. The detainees had been remanded in judicial custody by the Tahsildar of Mysore.

The court directed the release of the people citing procedural errors. The court held that the executive magisterate of Mysore did not follow the guidelines while detaining the people. However, it allowed the police to continue with the probe. The Tahsildar, in his affidavit filed in the court, reportedly stated that 162 people from the same community were remanded due to the police report. He added that the detainees had not given their correct addresses.

The court, however, ordered that the arrested should be released unless they were required in some other criminal case.

Clashes erupted in Mysore on July 2 when a masjid/madrasa compound was desecrated by miscreants. Three people were killed and many injured in the violence that followed. Police had to fire to disperse the crowds from the streets. Fifteen activists of the PFI were arrested by the police after a press conference by the organisation demanding the arrest of those who instigated problems in the area. Many others too were detained by the police. The PFI then organised a protest rally demanding the release of the innocent people arrested. The peaceful protesters were lathicharged by the police and then detained. The HC has now ordered the release of these people.