The Supreme Court has served notice to 21 persons (of PFI) accused in the anti-CAA protests of Mangaluru. The Karnataka high court had granted them conditional bail but the top court stayed the bail after the Karnataka government approached it.
Bengaluru: The anti-CAA protests in the coastal town of Mangaluru in December last are still fresh in our memory.
In the name of protests, many antisocial elements resorted to vandalism. Police officers themselves were at the receiving end. Some even tried to set a police station ablaze.
The police were forced to open fire with a view to keeping law and order situation under control.
A series of arrests were made and many of them belong to the radical Islamist outfit PFI.
But 21 of these arrested PFI members approached the Karnataka high court seeking bail as a lower court had not granted them bail in the case.
And to their glee, the Karnataka high court answered their plea in the positive as it granted them conditional bail. The court was of the view that there was no set or standard procedure in identifying the accused in the riots, and that, they were arrested solely because of their affiliation to the PFI. The judgement came on February 17.
As reported by a popular website, the high court had observed, "Though it is stated that the involvement of the petitioners is captured in CCTV footage and photographs, no such material is produced before the court showing the presence of any of the petitioners at the spot, armed with deadly weapons.
But the Karnataka government approached the top court in this regard.
A bench headed by CJI Arvind Bobde has cancelled this judgement of the high court and has served notice to the accused.
As per a popular website, the state government said that nearly 1,500-2,000 protesters indulged in violence near North Police Station Mangaluru. It said, "Coming to the police station and causing damage to police vehicles and private vehicles parked in the premises of the police station. In spite of the prohibitory order, the accused persons gathered with deadly weapons like petrol bomb, clubs etc., and caused the damage to the property..."
It further added, "The accused were properly identified in the said photographs and names of the accused found in the photograph were also detected in the photographs. In spite of the same, the High Court has observed that there is no material produced by the prosecution with regard to identity of accused persons."
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Last Updated 7, Mar 2020, 11:26 AM