New Delhi: Karnataka unit of BJP on Wednesday sought a probe by NIA into killing of 17 party workers and activists of different Hindu organisations and appealed to the government to keep a tab on activities of jihadi elements during celebration of Tipu Sultan Jayanti scheduled on Thursday.
Accusing the Congress-led Karnataka government of playing 'vote bank' politics, the party said its workers will stage a protest wearing black band at the event.
This was conveyed to Home Minister Rajnath Singh by a delegation of Karnataka BJP leaders led by State President B S Yeddurappa and Union Minister Ananth Kumar here.
"Over 17 party workers and activists from various Hindu organisations have been killed in the last one year. Some were killed during the Tipu Sultan Jayanti held at Madikeri last year. It is repeating this year as well. We have requested the Home Minister to initiate NIA probe into the killings," Yeddurappa told reporters after the meeting.
BJP worker Sunil Dongre from Bidar district is the 17th and latest murderous attack been perpetrated by jihadi forces in Karnataka. Besides, there have been six attempts to murder BJP and RSS activists, he said.
The party is the of firm view that all these murders were perpetrated by workers belonging to Popular Front of India (PFI), Karnataka Forum for Dignity (KFD) and Socialist Democratic Party of India (SDPI), he alleged.
In a representation made to the Home Minister, Yeddurappa claimed that the state government's move to organise Tipu Sultan Jayanti is "beginning of communalisation" in the state.
Stating that violence had erupted during the same event held at Madikeri last year, he said: "But a year elapsed, no probe has come out with the truth, either about the presence of large number of Muslim at Madikeri having come from Kerala or about the motive behind all 17 murders and six attempts to murder."
Seeking the central government's help to check activities of jihadi forces this time at the event, Yeddurappa said, "I have learnt from reliable sources that a very large number of Muslim youths in their mid-20s have entered Karnataka a few days back from Kerala and are stationed in different parts of the state ...
Their conduct and behavior evokes suspicion."
"These dubious elements need to be apprehended immediately before they carry out their sinister design and nefarious activities on November 10," he said.
He also alleged that the Congress government has made all preparations to "engineer riots" during Tipu Jayanti and blame BJP and Sangh Pariwar.
On Monday, the Karnataka government had sought 1,600 central paramilitary personnel for deployment during Tipu Sultan Jayanti, which is expected to face protests from some organisations.