Bengaluru: The national flag was on Monday hoisted for the “first time” at the Idgah Maidan in Chamarajet here, whose ownership had run into controversy.
The event was held under tight security with Rapid Action Force (RAF), City Armed Reserve (CAR), and Karnataka State Reserve Police (KSRP) platoons deployed in and around the venue.
With several groups recently announcing that they will hoist the national flag at the Idgah Maidan on Independence Day, the state government had recently decided that a Revenue Department official of the rank of Assistant Commissioner will be hoisting the tricolour.
Revenue Minister R Ashoka, who had visited Idgah Maidan on Sunday to take stock of the arrangements, had said for 75 years the flag was not hoisted there, and that the state government has now taken a firm decision in this regard.
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Assistant Commissioner M G Shivanna hoisted the tricolour, which was attended by Member of Parliament P C Mohan, MLA B Z Zameer Ahmed Khan, Additional Commissioner of Police Sandeep Patil, Deputy Commissioner of Police Laxman B Nimbargi were among those present.
Following the hoisting of the tricolour and the singing of the national anthem, “Bharat Mata Ki Jai ” slogans reverberated in the area.
The public witnessed the event that went on peacefully, which also saw cultural programmes performed by students of Chamarajpet Government School.
Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike (BBMP), the city civic body, had recently dismissed the petition filed by the Karnataka State Board of Auqaf for a ‘khata’ (document which identifies the ownership of a property) in its favour for the communally-sensitive Idgah Maidan, and had declared the Karnataka government’s Revenue Department to be the default owner of the land.
Following the BBMP order, several Hindu organisations had announced that they will celebrate Independence Day on the ground.
Also, local Congress MLA Zameer Ahmed Khan too had announced that they will go ahead and hoist the tricolour on the ground.
The decades-old dispute over Idgah Maidan had once again come to fore earlier this year, when some Hindu outfits sought BBMP’s permission to hold events at the place.
This resulted in two contrary sets of documents emerging, as the Karnataka State Board of Auqaf presented a 1965 gazette notifying the land as Wakf property, while the 1974 City Survey records and all other civic records thereafter showed the land to be a playground.