An eyewitness to the Bengaluru riots on Wednesday said that huge crowd pelted stones at police and damaged property on Tuesday.
News agency ANI quoted Sharif, an eyewitness to the incident, who said that it was the public's fault. Sharif, belonging to Civil Defence and an eye-witness to DJ Halli Police Station's vandalization, record his statement with the police and said "We're from Civil Defence & had come to protect Police. It was public's fault. This (Police Station) is like my temple,my masjid"
In the video, Sharif can be heard talking to the reporters. He told them that there were at least 50,000 to 60,000 rioters who attacked the police and damaged property last night.
Three people were killed and many injured in police firing in eastern parts of Bengaluru on Tuesday night over a Facebook message posted allegedly by a relative of a Congress MLA. Section 144 has been clamped in the area and the situation is reportedly tense but under control.
Over 60 police personnel were injured and 110 people have been arrested for violence, stone-throwing, and assault on police personnel.
Congress MLA Srinivas Murthy's house was partially damaged as protesters set fire to it. Over 25 four-wheelers were set on fire; 200 bikes kept at a police station were also set ablaze. A police station in the area was damaged in the violence.
It was Murthy's nephew Naveen, who allegedly posted a provocative message and a cartoon pertaining to a rape incident on Facebook. The police took him into custody.
The violence spread as the police arrived late because the staff were on Covid duty. The strength is also depleted due to the virus outbreak.
The Bengaluru police tweeted to say: "DG Halli and KG Halli saw violent incidents. To bring this under control, police used lathi charge, tear gas and firing. The Police Commissioner went to the spot. Police bandobast is in place. Strict action will be taken against those offenders."
The police used lathi-charge, tear gas and firing to disperse the violent crowd.
Bengaluru police commissioner Kamal Pant said the situation has been brought under control. While a curfew has been imposed in the violence-hit areas of DG Halli and KG Halli till tomorrow morning, large gatherings have been banned in the rest of Bengaluru city.
Karnataka Chief Minister BS Yediyurappa condemned the attack and said strict action will be taken against the perpetrators of the violence.
The Congress MLA had released a video appealing to the people to maintain peace. Karnataka Home Minister Basavaraj Bommai also released a video message, saying people should not take law into their own hands.
He said that the police have been given a free hand to bring down the situation under control.
Meanwhile, senior Congress leader Dinesh Gundu Rao also appealed to people not to take law into their hands.
"Horrible situation in Pulakeshinagar after the attack on our MLA @AkhandaSrinivas house and the Kaval Byrsandra Polcie satiation. Whatever the provocation nobody can take law into their own hands and destroy public property," he said on Twitter.
"I urge all the people to maintain calm and the govt to handle this delicate situation firmly but surely and not play politics. I also see a conspiracy in the way the Facebook post has been put out & looks to have been done to incite disturbance," he added.
(With inputs from FPJ's Shankar Raj)