Police detains BJP workers protesting against the celebration of ‘Tipu Jayanti’ in Karnataka’s Chikmagalur on Saturday. (PTI photo)
The celebrations of the birth anniversary of Tipu Sultan, the 18th-century ruler of Mysore, passed off peacefully Saturday amid protests by the opposition BJP and a controversy over the absence of Karnataka Chief Minister H D Kumaraswamy and Deputy CM G Parameshwara from official events to mark the day.
Kumaraswamy sought to deflect reports that he was not in favour of the celebrations by issuing a statement of support. The former Mysore king’s administrative measure were innovative and commendable, a statement issued by the CMO said.
The CMO said Kumaraswamy was resting on the advice of his doctors. “It is unnecessary to add special meaning to it. It is also far from truth that he is not taking part due to the fear of losing power, as he opposes such blind beliefs,” it said.
The BJP continued its protests against the Tipu Jayanti celebrations, like in previous years. The party’s leaders courted arrest in several parts of the state. In Kodagu, a district where two people died in 2015 amid protests, BJP’s former minister K G Bopaiah was taken into custody by police following protests.
Former Karnataka chief minister Siddaramaiah, who began the practice of celebrating Tipu Jayanti in 2014, was felicitated on Saturday by Muslim leaders from around the state.
Former minister in the Siddaramaiah government, Tanveer Sait, said a wrong impression had been created among the Muslims by the coalition government on account of the CM and Deputy CM staying away from the Tipu Jayanti celebrations.