Karnataka legislator's son surrenders in assault case

Bengaluru, Feb 19: Karnataka Congress legislator N.A. Haris' son and expelled state Youth Congress leader Mohammed Nalapad surrendered a day after he was booked on Sunday in an assault case, police said on Monday.

"Nalapad surrendered to us at the Cubbon Park police station where a case was booked against him for allegedly assaulting and severely injuring a youth in a cab on Saturday night," police sub-inspector K. Suresh told IANS.

Nalapad, whose whereabouts were unknown for the last 36 hours, came to the police station in the city centre along with a lawyer to record his statement and seek bail when produced in a court later in the day.

"We have recorded his statement and took his biometrics for producing him in a court and seek his custody to investigate the case, as an attempt to murder charge has been added to the FIR (first information report) in view of the severe injuries and loss of blood the victim (Vidvat) suffered," said Suresh.

The ruling Congress on Sunday expelled Nalapad, 24, from the party's primary membership for 6 years. He was also sacked as the state Youth Congress general secretary after the assault complaint was filed.

Nalapad and his friends allegedly bashed up Vidvat, 24, at Fergy Cafe in the upscale UB City Mall following a verbal spat over a trivial issue.

"Vidvat was having dinner with his friend Praveen, when Nalapad objected to him placing his fractured leg on a chair. When Vidvat told Nalapad to mind his business, the latter, who was at the adjacent table, became angry and beat him up with his friends," Circe Inspector Vijaya Hadagalli told IANS.

City Police Commissioner T. Suneel Kumar suspended Hadagalli for not registering the case against Nalapad earlier and failing to trace or nab him.

Haris represents the Shantinagar assembly segment in city central.

There was high drama at the police station where about 500 activists of the opposition BJP and Janata Dal-Secular (JD-S) and Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) assembled and clashed with Congress workers over the incident.

"We had to resort to caning them to disperse them as their demonstration was blocking the busy arterial road and causing a traffic snarl," added Suresh.

Earlier in the day, Haris told reporters at his residence that he had advised his son through his friends to surrender to avoid a non-bailable warrant being issued by a local court against him for evading arrest by the police.

"I did not know where my son was since Sunday, as he switched off his mobile after I scolded him for assaulting an innocent victim," asserted Haris.

Meanwhile, the ruling party's state president G. Parameshwara enquired about Vidvat's condition and assured him that the state government would bear his treatment expenses.