- Dr Rajkumar died of cardiac arrest on April 12 in 2006
- Bengaluru and various parts of the state witnessed violence during the final procession of the actor
- Here are five incidents which shook Bengaluru on the fateful day
Here are five major incidents which shook Bengaluru on the day Dr Rajkumar died.
Stone pelted on the hearse
Even the vehicle carrying the body of Dr Rajkumar was not spared. Fans who could not get the glimpse of the actor’s body pelted stone on the hearse as the body was inside. Son Shivarajkumar is seen sitting on the hearse, and it was becoming difficult for the police to handle the crowd and let the final procession proceed.
Tear-gas, lathi charge, stampede
The crowds in lakhs started protesting against a lack of arrangements made by the government as people could not have a final look at their favourite actor, who was no more. With violence braking out in every part of the city, especially in Sadashivnagar (where Dr Rajkumar’s house is situated), Bellary Road, Magadi Road, Kanteerava Indoor Stadium and Hudson Circle.
With protesters setting vehicles on fire and with the fear of stampede the police resorted to lathi charge. When they could not control the crowd, they had to lob tear-gas shells.
Policemen, media persons injured
People expressed their anger against the policemen who were trying to control the crowd. When the police started lathi charge, they started attacking the police. At least 25 policemen were severely injured and had to be admitted to the hospital.
People’s anger also turned towards the OB vans of the media telecasting the final journey of the great actor. The media covering the violence made the crowds angrier, and stones were pelted on the media persons reporting and their vehicles. Some were even angry that media people were allowed to go with the procession and way was made for them whereas people could not see the actor’s face.
Nowhere to go
The people who had started to Bangalore from distant places in Karnataka had no clue that Dr Rajkumar had died by the time they started their journey. But as they reached Bengaluru, the Majestic bus stop, all buses were stranded at the bus stop, and the authorities had decided not to ply any buses that day as angry people were pelting stones and even setting fire to the vehicles on the road.
Thus with nowhere to go, people spent the entire day at the bus stop. They could not even go back to their native places as bus service was completely halted. No vehicle was moving within the city nor was going outside the city. Even people who had come out to go to work were seen stranded on roads.
Kanteerava Stadium ransacked, Kumaraswamy abused
Dr Rajkumar's body was kept at the Poornapragna School Ground. When the news spread that the body would be taken to Kanteerava Stadium fans here started protesting, and violence soon erupted. However, it was difficult to get the vehicle out of the ground. But thousands of people waiting at the Kanteerava Stadium got angry, and they ransacked the stadium.
In fact, abuses were hurled at the then chief minister Kumaraswamy, alleging him of not making proper arrangements for the fans to be able to see their favourite actor for one last time.
In other incidents, people pasted Dr Rajkumar’s posters and Kannada flag on their vehicles on the day and for a week to protect their vehicles from protesters and attackers.
It can be noted that violence to this intensity was witnessed when Dr Rajkumar was abducted by forest brigand Veerappan on July 30 in 2000. Dr Raj was 71 when he was kidnapped from his farm house at Gajanur. He was released after 108 days of captivity.
Dr Rajkumar died at the age of 77 of cardiac arrest.
Last Updated 31, Mar 2018, 6:58 PM IST