Mohammed Haris Nalapad, the son of Congress MLA NA Haris, surrendered before the police on Monday, 19 February, a day after an FIR was filed against him in connection to the brutal assault on a man in Bengaluru.
He was taken into police custody after his surrender at the Cubbon Park police station. According to reports, Nalapad arrived at the police station from his residence even though he was reportedly absconding ever since the assault incident.
Nalapad, who was the general secretary of Youth Congress wing of Bengaluru, was expelled from the party for six years on Sunday.
He has been accused of beating a man identified as Vidyut at a restaurant in the Karnataka capital. Reports say that Vidyut had sat with his leg stretched due to an injury to which Nalapad objected. The man’s refusal enraged the Congress leader.
Vidyut was admitted to the hospital for treatment with a swollen face and dried blood on his shirt.
According to reports, Nalapad even threatened the victim at the hospital. The brother of the victim alleged that around 15-20 henchmen of the son of the MLA, too, were involved in the attack.
In the FIR against Nalapad, the Bengaluru police have also named 10 others who were allegedly involved in the attack on Vidyut.
The incident has become a political trouble for Karnataka Chief Minister Siddaramaiah as the state heads to polls in two months time.
Opposition parties, including AAP, protested in Bengaluru on Sunday demanding the arrest of Nalapad. Protests were also launched by BJP and the JD(S) against the Congress-led government in the state.
Protests continued outside the police station on Monday as the Opposition parties alleged that the government was trying to shield Nalapad. They raised slogans against the government and demanded the resignation of NA Haris, who is an MLA from Shanti Nagar.
Reports say that the circle inspector of Cubbon Park police has been suspended for failing to arrest Nalapad.
Speaking to the media on Sunday, Haris had claimed that he didn’t know the whereabouts of his son. Stressing that no one is above the law, Haris had appealed for not “politicising” the matter.
As the matter snowballed into a controversy for the Congress, the Karnataka CM and other state leaders from the party condemned the attack on Vidyut.
“Offenders should be punished to the full extent of law regardless of who they are. No less, no more,” wrote Siddaramaiah on Twitter.
Dinesh Gundu Rao, working president KPCC, took to Twitter to send across a similar message: “Ghastly incident..nobody is above law..police have to take strict action and arrest all concerned, who so ever they may be.”
While announcing the expulsion of Nalapad, G Parameshwara, KPCC president, wrote: “Atrocities in any form is not tolerated in @INCKarnataka. Legal actions have been taken against those responsible. The victim will be served justice.”