Karnataka HC quashes FIR against Hindu activists, BJP leaders

Bengaluru: The Karnataka High Court on Tuesday quashed an FIR against several pro-Hindu activists and BJP leaders, who were booked for violating prohibitory orders under Section 144 during a protest against the alleged killing of RSS member Sharath Madiwala.

They had protested, condemning the killing of Sharath and had demanded criminal action against those involved in the murder.

The Bantwal police registered cases against 15 people, including BJP MP Nalin Kumar Kateel, Puttur MLA Sanjeeva Matandoor, Bantwal MLA Rajesh Naik, Karkala MLA V. Sunil Kumar, Kota Srinivas Poojari, RSS leader Kalladka Prabhakar Bhat, Bajarang Dal state convener Sharan Pumpwell, Prabhakar Kottari and others, for violating the prohibitory orders Section 144.

Sharath, a resident of Sajipa in Bantwal taluk and a member of RSS, was attacked on July 7, 2017 and he died three days later.

During the funeral procession, stones were thrown and the leaders were booked for violating Sec 144.

The leaders had approached the court seeking to quash the FIR against them.

NHAI response sought
The High Court sought a response from the National Highways Authority of India (NHAI) and the Union government on a petition seeking exemption from payment of toll for advocates and farmers.

The Karnataka State Advocates’ Association Federation has approached the court seeking directions to the central government to consider advocates and farmers as a special category and exempt them from paying the toll on all National Highways under Rule 3 (1) and also private investment projects.

Rule 3 (1) relates to the National Highways Fee (Determination of Rates and Collection) Rules, 2008. The association urged the court to declare the fixation of toll by the NHAI under the concessionaire agreement as exorbitant, arbitrary, whimsical and having no nexus to the service rendered in the background of the provisions of the Central Road Cess fund Act 2000. 

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