Manguluru Pub Attack: The nation was in for a shock when the Third Judicial Magistrate at the first class court in Mangaluru acquitted Manguluru pub attack accused and Sri Ram Sene chief Pramod Muthalik. In its verdict, the court said, “Pramod Muthalik is an honourable man. His outfit, the Sri Ram Sene had no role to play in the attack on young women and men, who were at the ‘Amnesia – The Lounge’, a pub in Mangaluru in coastal Karnataka on 24 January 2009.”
So, if not the members of Sri Ram Sene, then who? The disturbing video of the attack which went viral on the social platforms was viewed by the entire nation with a hope that the culprits will be behind bars. However, it has been seen as no less than a travesty that the alleged culrpits managed to walk free after committing an outrageous incident of this sort and that too in an explicit manner.
Moments after the verdict, Muthalik came in front of the media persons with a smile on his face. “My aim was only to protest against the increasing pub culture. This judgement is the answer for those who opposed us and called us goons,” said the Sene Chief. Notably, the Karnataka deputy convenor of the Sene, Prasad Attavar, as per media reports, had also claimed responsibility for the attack back then, stating the Sene was against women who violated “traditional Indian values”.
The big question is – How could the prosecution fail so miserably to establish team Muthalik’s guilt, despite the availability of the shocking visuals of assault. In its ruling, the court observed that due to the lack of evidence, the accused Pramod Muthalik and 24 other members of Sri Ram Sene could not be proved guilty.
Media reports have it that the crucial video of the girls in Amnesia pub being slapped and brutally assaulted outside the pub was never submitted before the court by police officials while filing the charge sheet. In the assault caught on camera, the women at the pub on 24 January 2009, were accused of “loose morals.”
The other big reason behind the collapse of the case – the women who were the victims of the attack never came forward to testify against the Sri Ram Sene men. The prosecution could not produce the three main women who were attacked, before the magistrate.
The picture ahead – As the leaders of the Karnataka government expressed their shock over the decision, the state government may file an immediate appeal in a higher court.