Mangaluru: A day later Kadri police inspector T D Nagaraj was suspended following intense pressure from lawyers for allegedly assaulting their colleague inside the police station, Mangaluru bar association president Chengappa on Saturday addressed a press meet at the court and demanded Nagaraj's arrest within three days.
Advocate Uttam Rai was allegedly assaulted by inspector Nagaraj inside Kadri police station with his client. Following the incident, lawyers staged a strong protest outside the police station until Nagaraj was suspended and also demanded his arrest.
"When Uttam Rai had gone to the police station with his client Sandeep Shetty (along with Ratnakar of Bhuvi Enterprises), inspector T D Nagaraj insulted him with abusive words and snatched a gold chain worth Rs 5,000 which he was wearing, cash and mobile phone and hit him on his chest, temple and stomach and also kicked him. He also threatened to open a rowdy sheet against Rai and get him debarred from the bar council," Chengappa said.
"Inspector Nagaraj also pushed Rai inside the lockup and not only assaulted him, but also insulted the entire lawyer community. The Mangaluru bar association members who came to the police station to discuss the issue were also ill-treated. They then held a protest outside the Kadri police station," he added.
"The higher police officials, realizing the seriousness of the issue and bowing to the demand of the lawyers, suspended T D Nagaraj immediately. Also, a non-bailable case was registered against him in Urwa police station under IPC sections 323, 341, 504, 506, 384, 386, 394, 511 and 34. We have also been assured that the accused police inspector and other police personnel involved in the case would be arrested," he said.
The FIR filed in Urwa police station also reported that inspector Nagaraj had demanded Rs 10,000 from Uttam Rai's client, but he told that his client was poor and was unable to pay the sum.
Chengappa also added that the lawyer Uttam Rai has been admitted to a private hospital in the city.
He further said that T D Nagaraj has got himself admitted to a hospital and filed a counter case against Uttam Rai under IPC section 353 for obstructing official duty. "The police had assured that no counter case would be registered but they have gone back on their word. This is a false case and the bar association strongly condemns it," he added.
"This incident should not have happened. We have our own way of working. We are permitted to assist our clients to police stations. It is not a crime. Ordinary people feel scared to go to police station and that is why they ask lawyer's assistance," he said.
"There were many meettings with the DCP and the ACP to settle the matter but we did not compromise. We protested mainly to create awareness in society. All are equal before the law. We will not allow inspector Nagaraj to be let scot free. We have given the police three days' time to arrest him, and if they do not do so, the entire State Bar Council will hold a massive protest," he warned.
"We thank DCP Shantaraju and ACP Thilakchandra for their pateince and good work. We hold awareness camps on law for people, and in future will do it for the police department also so that such incidents do not occur again. CCTVs should be installed in every police station to stop corruption in the department," he added.
Mangaluru bar association vice-president Yashodhara Karkera, general secretary Raghavendra H V, treasurer Yatheesh and others were present.