Udupi: Congress leader Ivan D’Souza said that BJP MLAs of Uttar Kannada and Dakshina Kannada used the death of Paresh Mestha for their political gains.
Addressing presspersons here, “Congress lost all the seats in Udupi and Dakshina Kannada as the BJP used the death of Paresh Mestha for their political gains. When Siddaramaiah was the chief minister BJP MP and MLAs including Shobha Karandlaje, Ananthkumar Hegde, D V Sadananda Gowda, Sunil Naik and many others had urged for a CBI enquiry into the matter and had created communal disharmony all over the state by targeting a certain minority community as the murderers of Paresh Mestha.”
Ivan further added, “When Praveen Nettaru was killed BJP leaders went to his house, distributed the compensation, laid foundation stone for his home. I also appreciate you all for what you did for Harsha’s family in Shivamogga. But my question is what you have done for Paresh Mestha’s family? Because you won the election and it’s done you didn’t bother about Mestha’s family. Now elections are on the way and you want to grab publicity, I will not be surprised if BJP takes back the jobs given to the deceased’s family members after the elections, Ivan said.
The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) had recently submitted its charge sheet in the Paresh Mesta death case.
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Paresh Mesta, a Hindu youth, died after slipping into the lake, while wandering when communal clashes took place in Honnavara town of Karnataka’s Uttara Kannada district, the CBI said.
The CBI had submitted the charge sheet to the local Honnavar Court. The charge sheet mentions that Paresh Mesta had attended then CM Siddaramaiah’s programme in Kumta city after travelling about 25 kilometers with friends.
After returning home, he again went out to meet his friends and never returned. The CBI has submitted statements of his friends and CCTV footage of the day as the evidence to the court.
The report also says that Paresh Mesta came home in an inebriated state many times and stayed back at his friend’s place. He also sold fish with his friends. The report says that Paresh Mesta was not in love with anyone and had taken permission from his parents to visit the Hindu pilgrimage center, Sabarimala.
Mesta, who went missing on December 6, 2017 during the communal clashes in Honnavar town, was found dead near Shettikere Lake after two days. The BJP and Hindu activists alleged that Mesta was killed in the mob violence and killers dumped the body later in the lake.
The BJP, which was in the opposition then had launched a full-fledged agitation against ruling the Congress then. The ruling Congress government suffered a setback due to the agitation in the Assembly elections of 2018.
The Hindu activists demanding the arrest of killers of Paresh, had torched the vehicle of the IGP. The police were pelted with stones. Many policemen were injured. Many political leaders, including Union Home Minister Amit Shah, had visited Mesta’s house. Then Siddaramaiah government had handed over the case to the CBI.
The report by the CBI is a setback for the ruling BJP, which stated Paresh Mesta death was accidental and filed a closure report. The CBI has filed the closure report after investigating the case for five years. The court will pronounce the verdict on November 16.