Three days after the murder of Activist-Lawyer Ajit Nayak in, Dandeli, the Uttara Kannada district of Karnatakathe state police are yet to ascertain the reason behind the murder and the culprits are still unidentified.
Ajit Nayak was killed on the night of July 27 when he was heading home from office. The incident has sparked numerous protests in different parts of the states. Condemning the murder, members of several Bar associations in the state including Sirsi, Shivamogga, and Karwar Bar associations boycotted the court proceedings on Saturday; while rights activists held candle marches at different places. Demanding immediate arrest of the culprits, Dandeli town was shut down on Saturday.
According to a report in The Hindu, the severely injured Nayak was rushed to a nearby hospital where the doctors declared him ‘brought dead’. Nayak was stabbed with a sword by an unknown person at his office premises.
The Karnataka Police is probing the incident. Uttara Kannada Additional Superintendent of Police, K.G. Devaraju, told The Hinduon Sunday, “We are on track. We are hopeful of cracking the case in two days.”
57-years old Nayak was vocal about several environmental causes including the Kali river rejuvenation. He was an active member of the Kali Bachao Andolan- a movement for the protection of Kali river from damming, rampant sand mining and pollution. Nayak was also the president of Dandeli Taluk Horata Samiti and former president of the Dandeli Block Congress Committee.
Environmentalists and human rights activists from various quarters have condemned the killing of Ajit Nayak. Speaking to Newsclick, Chennai based writer and activist, Nityanand Jayaraman said, “Intolerance and violence on all counts has drastically increased in India. Ajit Nayak's murder comes barely two months after the ghastly killing of 14 people by police firing in Thoothukudi. Ordinary people who raise their voices to protect the environment are being silenced by killers in uniform and without,”