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BJP attacks Siddaramaiah over law and order, murders of Gauri Lankesh, Kalburgi

BJP attacks Siddaramaiah over law and order, murders of Gauri Lankesh, Kalburgi

arnataka has witnessed a high-decibel campaign in the months running up to the Assembly election. The Bharatiya Janta Party (BJP) has launched a frontal attack against the Congress government under Siddaramaiah on various fronts, including deteriorating law and order.

BS Yeddyurappa, who is BJP's chief ministerial candidate in Karnataka, has accused the Congress of pushing the state back by 20 years on development due to 'crumbling infrastructure' and 'pathetic' law and order situation.


The Congress, however, dismissed such charges as 'baseless' with Karnataka Home Minister Ramalinga Reddy saying that while there has been a "slight increase in crime compared to the BJP regime but it is not proportional to the increase in Bengaluru's population by 35 lakh".


According to the National Crime Records Bureau (NCRB) data for 2016, Karnataka has reported 1,48,402 IPC crimes, which is up from 1,37,338 in 2014 and 1,38,847 in 2015. Based on crime rate, Karnataka is placed 10th among 36 states and Union Territories.

Southern states like Telangana, Tamil Nadu and Kerala are ranked higher based on crime rate; neighbouring Andhra Pradesh, however, is ranked lower (15) than Karnataka.

It is the figures for Bengaluru that sound the red alert. In number of IPC crimes, Bengaluru is second only to Delhi, and reported 45,797 cases in 2016, up from 31,892 in 2014 and 35,576 in 2015. Bengaluru is 7th among 19 metropolitan cities on crime rate as per NCRB data for 2016.

In assault on women with intent to outrage her modesty, Bengaluru is next to Delhi and Mumbai with similar trend in kidnappings and abduction. Among violent crimes, Delhi has reported highest number of murder cases (479), followed by Bengaluru which reported 229 cases of murder.


Questions on law and order and safety of citizens in Karnataka have become more pronounced after journalist-activist Gauri Lankesh, who was critical of right-wing Hindu extremism, was murdered by unidentified assailants outsider her house in Bengaluru on September 5, 2017.

Six months after the murder, the lone accused in the Gauri Lankesh murder has refused to undergo narco-analysis, a development that can have adverse impact on the investigation into the case. The case involving the murder of another rationalist, MM Kalburgi, in August 2015 is yet to register a major breakthrough.

Karnataka Chief Minister Siddaramaiah told the Assembly in November last year that his government is honest in its efforts and would ensure that the culprits in the Gauri Lankesh murder were brought to justice. On Kalburgi murder case, Siddaramaiah said that the culprits were yet to be found.

It remains to be seen if such assurances from the chief minister can convince voters in Karnataka.

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