KARWAR: Tension prevailed in Bhatkal town in Karnataka on Thursday after protesters pelted stones on the Town Municipal Council (TMC) office in protest. Following the incident, the Block Education Officer shut down schools and colleges in the town as a preventive measure.
Opposing the Bhatkal TMC's action of vacating its 34 TMC shops that were illegally occupied by vendors, a shopkeeper, Ramachandra Naik, set himself ablaze at the TMC complex.
His brother Eshwar Naik who went to rescue him was also injured in the incident. Ramachandra sustained more than 50 percent burn and was admitted to the Manipal hospital along with Eshwar who sustained 25 per cent burns.
After the incident, local people staged a protest, and some of them pelted stones at the TMC office. The district administration of Uttara Kannada has deployed hundreds of police personnel in the town to control the situation.
Meanwhile, local people staged a protest and threatened to block national highway-66 (Mangaluru-Mumbai). They calmed down only after the district DC assured them of visiting the spot. They also accused the DC of creating the problem in the first place.
According to police, additional superintendent of police Gopal Byakod visited the spot, both deputy commissioner S S Nakul and SP Vinayak Patil are in their way to Bhatkal. "If the stone pelting incident continues, police may impose curfew (section 144) in Bhatkal town.