Karnataka High Court seeks action against culprits

Bengaluru: Following reports of attack on public officials and workers while removing unauthorised hoardings and banners, the High Court on Friday warned the trouble makers and directed the police to take stern action.

Earlier, the advocate for the BBMP told the court that the authorities removing illegal hoardings were on Thursday assaulted near Mutthumariyamma Temple, in Ramamurthy Nagar police limits. An FIR has been lodged in this connection.

The city police commissioner was requested to appear before the court. Later Commissioner Suneel Kumar and S.R. Chandradhar, Station House Officer, Ramamurthy Nagar Station,  appeared along with advocate general Udaya Holla.

Mr Holla submitted that the matter has been taken up with all seriousness by the administration and steps are being taken to carry out an appropriate probe and submit a report at the earliest.

He pointed out that four arrests have been made in the matter and the investigation was underway.

“We are not making any comment on the investigation because it is required to be carried out by the investigating officer, but looking to the seriousness of the matter and its implications, we would definitely expect that the result of the investigation is presented to the Magistrate concerned at the earliest and in any case, on or before August 7, as assured,” the court observed.

The court deemed it appropriate to order that any bail application in crime registered before the Ramamurthy Nagar Police Station shall only be dealt with and considered in the High Court.

“If any bail application is moved in the matter, whether for after-arrest bail or pre-arrest bail, it shall be sent by the Court concerned to the Registrar General of this Court, who shall register the same as a bail application in this court and shall place the same before the roster Bench dealing with bail matters,” the court stated.

It further observed that when the BBMP officers are carrying out their duties by removing illegal hoarding, any attempt by any person to obstruct their work is required to be viewed seriously, particularly when this petition remains pending in high court.

The court has said that it would be expected of the Police Commissioner and all other officers concerned to ensure that in the present drive of removing the unauthorised hoardings /flexes/ banners etc., appropriate support and protection is provided to the officers and the workers of BBMP.

This apart, it is also required of the Police Commissioner to ensure a proper vigil so as to prevent reappearance of such illegal hoardings in the city of Bengaluru, it added.

The Police Commissioner was directed to file an affidavit on or before the next date, specifying the steps taken and proposed to be taken. The case was adjourned to August 8. 

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