Alarm as poster greeting gangster Bannanje Raja pops up

10:33 AM, Saturday, December 16th, 2017

bananje-rajaUdupi: The sudden appearance of a poster greeting gangster Bannanje Raja on his birthday at the Bannanje Circle close to the District Police Office was a cause for some alarm here on Friday. The poster was later removed by the authorities.

The poster put up by an organisation, Bannanje Raja Abhimanigala Balaga, as depicted on it, greeted the gangster on his birthday, which according to the poster was on Friday.

The poster was hung from a pole at the Bannanje Circle. The poster hails Bannanje Raja as a “social worker, protector of the poor and beloved leader”. It also states that the Bannanje Raja Abhimanigala Balaga would distribute fruits and blankets at the Sanjay Gandhi Hospital at 11.30 a.m. Since, there is no Sanjay Gandhi Hospital in Udupi, it is assumed that it must be in Bengaluru.

What surprised people was how the poster could be put up on a major intersection of the city and that too on the way to the District Police Office, Taluk Office, and Inspection Bungalow.

After photographs and video clips of the poster went viral on the social media, the authorities removed it from the pole from where it was hung.

Meanwhile, Superintendent of Police Sanjeev M. Patil told The Hindu that the police will now investigate who put up the poster. “The Additional Superintendent of Police is looking into the matter,” he said.

Bannanje Raja, who is facing 44 cases, is now in a jail in Belagavi. Raja, a native of Udupi, was extradited from Morocco in 2015 in connection with 16 cases.

After extradition, he was brought to Udupi under tight security on August 15, 2015. Of the 16 cases for which he was extradited, he had four cases in Udupi, including two cases in the Udupi Town Police Station, one case each in Manipal and Malpe police stations.

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