K'taka: Sri Rama Sene's fresh assault on 'freedom of speech', attacks a journalist in Koppa
Chikkamagaluru, Jan 28: Months after the reshuffle in the right wing outfit Sri Rama Sene, it has unleashed its ugly face. However this time outfit did not wield its communal blade against any pub or inter-religion couples but at a budding Kannada scribe who believes 'pen is mightier than sword'.
In the afternoon hours of Wednesday, Jan 27 two motor cycle borne Sri Rama Sene activists wearing a helmet allegedly attacked a scribe, Riyaz Kachgal for writing news reports against Sri Rama Sene state President Mahesh Kattimane at a hotel in Koppa taluk.
The whole story unfolds like this. "I was writing against BJP MLA Jeevaraj and Mahesh in a Kannada weekly, Agni." Recently Sena activist, Madhusudan on behalf of MLA and Mahesh issued a warning on Jan 22, not to file Anti-Jeevraj and Mahesh stories and threatened of dire consequences, if I failed to concede to the warnings."
The situation was tense between Riyaz and Mahesh but the scribe did not back down from writing stories. This ired the Sri Rama Sene state president thus to engage in a ploy to assault the reporter. Interesting, according to Riyaz, a editor of a local newspaper, Badavara Bandhu, Siddique was also involved in the ploy to knock down controversial stories.
Following the warning, Riyaz did not file any complaint with the police as he considered the warning as casual in journalists' career. A few days later, Editor Siddique called Riyaz claiming he would hold a compromise meet with Mahesh Kattimane in a hotel.
"I agreeing to it, went to the hotel on Jan 27 where both Mahesh and Siddique were present. While starting the conversation, Madhusudan, accompanied by two motor-cycle borne attackers wearing the helmet thrashed me in front of Mahesh and Siddique," Riyaz informed.
Riyaz now has filed a complaint in a local police station. Though there was resistance initially by the police to file the First Information Report (FIR), but on Jan 28 the police lodged FIR. Section 323 and 506 has been invoked in the FIR. The police has booked Madhusudan in the case.
When contacted state secretary of Sri Rama Sene Praveen Valke, he said he is unaware of the incident. A few moments later, he contacted OneIndia and said he inquired the matter. "I learnt about the incident from Koppa unit. The incident is unfortunate," Valke added.
What Mahesh Kattimane says
Mahesh Kattimane contended that he has no connection to the incident. He admitted that Madhusudan is Sene's activist. "There was personal clash between Madhusudan and Riyaz and that sparked the attack."
When asked about the compromise meet, Mahesh informed that there was such meeting. "After the completion of meeting attack occurred." Mahesh said there was no big attack on him, but just a slap.
Mahesh alleged that Riyaz was demanding ransom with many leaders threatening to publish anti-stories.