Bengaluru: The Bengaluru Police have arrested six SDPI (Social Democratic Party of India) activists for attack on a right-wing sympathiser late in December when the latter was returning home from a pro-CAA rally.
The arrest has set off a renewed call from senior BJP leaders and ministers to ban the SDPI and Popular Front of India (PFI), accusing them of radicalising and plotting attacks against Hindutva activists.
The accused were identified as Sana alias Sanaulla Shareef, Irfan, Syed Sadik, Syed Akbar, Akbar Basha and Syed Siddique.
The pro-CAA rally was addressed by Bangalore south MP Tejasvi Surya and activist of the 'Namo Brigade' Chakravarty Sulibele. There were also instances of stones being pelted at that rally.
Addressing a press conference on Friday, police commissioner Bhaskar Rao said the SDPI funded these accused each month to carry out disruptive activities.
“They were funded to create communal tension, recruit, disturb and to kill mass leaders in Bengaluru to create communal tension. These six people don’t have any contact with Muslim community leaders. They were told to create panic in Bengaluru," he said.
On the afternoon of December 22 last year, 31-year-old south Bangalore resident Varun Bopala was accosted by two men on a bike when he was returning from the rally.
When he fell down from the bike, he was stabbed by two others who had joined the duo. The four attackers had then sped away and locals rushed an injured Bopala to a hospital nearby. He survived the attack.
Police released CCTV images and maps of the route taken by the attackers, tracing how they changed their clothes, disposed of their weapons and their vehicles and helmets to ward off investigators.
“These people used many helmets and phones and wore layers of shirts. They wanted to kill a Hindu leader. Several stones was pelted at the rallyists in Bengaluru on the day of the pro-CAA rally,” Rao said.
They have been booked for attempt to murder, unlawful assembly, rioting and being armed with deadly weapons. A special investigation team is being constituted to track down other affiliates of the accused.
Many ministers have renewed the call for a ban on SDPI and PFI. They had earlier demanded a ban when Rajnath Singh was the Home Minister but it could not be implemented.