Five Bajrang Dal activists were arrested in Shivamogga district in Karnataka for allegedly attacking a Muslim trader for selling halal meat, even as the 'Boycott halal products' campaign by Vishwa Hindu Parishad and Bajrang Dal intensified in the state.
Chief Minister Basavaraj Bommai appealed to people to celebrate Hindu new year Ugadi and 'Hosa Tadaku' festivals peacefully without disturbing law and order.
During Hosa Tadaku, which is celebrated a day after Ugadi, Hindus who prefer non-vegetarian food, cook meat and chicken. The right wing activists have appealed to the Hindus not to buy halal meat as it is already offered to Allah by the Muslims and offering such 'stale meal' would be a disrespect to Hindu Gods and Goddesses.
On Thursday, two incidents were reported in Bhadrawati town one in Hosamane Police Station limits and another in old town police station limits, Shivamogga Superintendent of Police B M Lakshmi Prasad told reporters on Friday.
In Hosamane police station limits, five people went to the shop and demanded non-halal meat. When it was not provided, the shop was shut. They assaulted one boy in the shop on his head with their hands, he added.
Similarly, a case was registered in old town police station where some people went to Janata Hotel and told the owner not to sell halal meat. When a customer questioned, he was assaulted, the officer said.
"In both the cases, the same accused have been named. A case has been registered against them and they have been arrested. They are Vadivelu, Srikanth, Krishna, Sawai Singh and Gunda," Prasad said.
In Bengaluru, the Chief Minister said he has given directions to the district authorities. "I have asked all the deputy commissioners and superintendents of police of all the districts that people have to celebrate their festivals without disturbing the law and order. Directions given should be followed strictly," Bommai told reporters.
He also said peace meetings have been convened with all the people concerned where they were told to ensure peaceful celebration of the festival.
Intensifying their drive, Hindu outfits on Saturday too got down on the streets appealing to the Hindus to use only 'jhatka meat', which means killing any animal by stunning it so that the sacrificed animal does not undergo the much sufferings.
The campaigners have tied up with Hindu meat vendors and have put up signboards of '100% jhatka certified' on the outlets.
Hindu activists have even offered 10 per cent concession on the purchase of meat of Rs 200 and above and free home delivery within eight kms of the outlet. The activists stood outside temples with posters and banners offering Ugadi prasad and appealing to them not to use any halal product especially during 'Hosa Tadaku'.
Meanwhile, Hindu Religious Institutions and Charitable Endowment Minister Shashikala Jolle said whatever the Hindu outfits are doing is right.
"The issue of halal and non-halal is very much prevalent in coastal Karnataka if not in other parts of the state. I feel that whatever our pro-Hindu outfits are doing appears right. They are spreading awareness about the 'jhatka cut' of the animal because it has to be offered to God. I am in favour of these organisations," Jolle told reporters.