Lawyers, the media, the police. These three important, though not-beyond-reproach, sections of society are at war with each other in Karnataka. Sadly, there aren’t any sober voices to bring about a reconciliation. The mistrust runs deep, members of each section think any truce can only be temporary.
It all started on March 2, when television crews covering the appearance of mining baron Janardhana Reddy before the CBI court were attacked by lawyers. The attack was unprovoked, but certainly not without a history. It is said the media personnel retaliated, and while all this was happening, the police stood by—until they were caught in the middle, whereupon they brutally beat up the lawyers with lathis. Versions vary, depending on who you are speaking to. By all accounts, lawyers, media personnel and policemen fought for more than a couple of hours at the Bangalore city civil courts complex. In the melee, a judge, 15 policemen and ten media personnel were injured, a dozen motorbikes were burnt and some 40 cars vandalised.