Bengaluru riots: SC rejects K'taka MLA plea against former Mayor Sampath Raj

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New Delhi [India], August 24 (ANI): Supreme Court on Monday rejected the petition filed by the sitting Karnataka MLA R Akhanda Srinivas Murthy and upheld the bail order pronounced by the Karnataka High Court in February this year to the former mayor of Bengaluru Sampath Raj for his alleged involvement in the East Bengaluru riots and violence case.

A two-judge bench of the apex court, headed by Justice Sanjay Kishan Kaul and comprising Justice Hrishikesh Roy, passed the order and cancelled the petition.

"We are not cancelling the bail order," the bench led by Justice Kaul said.

The advocates who appeared for the petitioner before the Supreme Court were Devdutt Kamat, R Basant whereas, for the respondents, senior lawyers Mukul Rohtagi, Ranjeet Kumar, S Nagamutthu, and advocates Mayank Jain, Parmatma Singh and Madhur Jain, submitted their pleadings and submissions before the SC.

The former mayor of Bengaluru Sampath Raj was in judicial custody for around 90 days, with respect to his alleged role in the East Bengaluru violence case.

In February this year, the single judge bench of Justice John Michael Cunha, in Bengaluru, had granted bail to Sampath Raj.

This was subsequently challenged by Srinivas Murthy, before the Supreme Court, through a Special Leave Petition (SLP) and pleaded for cancellation of the bail order granted to Sampath Raj.

According to the prosecution, around 2000- 3,000 people went on a rampage on August 11 2020, and allegedly set ablaze the houses of Pulakeshinagar Congress MLA Srinivas Murthy and his sister over an alleged inflammatory social media post by his nephew.

The prosecution further said that the irate mob also torched Devara Jeevanahalli and Kadugondanahalli police stations over suspicion that the nephew was present there.

In the charge sheet, the accused, Sampath Raj was charged with hatching a criminal conspiracy with other accused persons for the violence to finish off the MLA politically in connivance with another Congress corporator and some others.

Sampath Raj, the Congress corporator from Devara Jeevanahalli municipal ward was arrested in Bengaluru on November 17, last year, before being granted bail in February this year. (ANI)

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