Eight members of “Kshatriya Mahasabha” were arrested Friday for allegedly creating ruckus and “attacking” BSP general secretary Naseemuddin Siddiqui’s convoy who was here to chalk out plans for party chief Mayawati’s visit to the city. District Magistrate Pankaj Kumar and Senior Superintendent of Police Preetinder Singh said that anticipating trouble, a large number of police officials were deployed on the route that Siddiqui’s convoy was to take. However, the activists, owing allegiance to Kshatriya Mahasabha and waving black flags, allegedly attempted to block the convoy’s passaage and pelted the vehicles with stones near Kuberpur village on the city outskirts.
“Windows of several vehicles in Siddiqui’s convoy were shattered. We have arrested some activists from Kshatriya Mahsabha including its president, Bhawar Singh Jadon, who were identified on the basis of some videos and photographs,” the SSP said. He added that an FIR has been lodged against a dozen men under various IPC sections. Siddiqui, who is facing protests over “derogatory remarks” against the family members of expelled BJP leader Dayashankar Singh, accused the BJP and SP of attempting to disrupt his visit to the city.
Mayawati, too, targeted the BJP accusing it of “resorting to violence”. In a statement, she said “BJP leaders, in the garb of Kshatriya community, attacked” Siddiqui and indulged in “stone pelting” on his car. She said the role of local police appears “suspicious” in the incident. Demanding “strict legal action” against those involved, the BSP chief claimed that the “absence of any action by the state government” on its own shows “its complicity with the BJP”. Siddiqui had gone to hold a party meeting in Agra Cantonment assembly constituency when the incident occurred.
While the BJP denied any involvement in the incident, a group of people, who had blocked Siddiqui’s motorcade, demanded that he should be arrested for showing disrespect to women. Siddiqui, however, claimed that the anti-women slogans attributed to him during BSP’s protests over Dayashankar’s remarks against Mayawati were “baseless” and challenged those attacking him “to produce video or audio evidence”. “I did not say what has been attributed to me in the media”, he reiterated.
The leader also alleged that Dayashankar’s wife, Swati who has lodged an FIR against him, had earlier been accused of domestic violence by her sister-in-law. Claiming that the recent exit of some senior leaders will not affect the BSP, Siddiqui said, “It’s good riddance to bad rubbish”. Siddiqui also reinducted Julfikar Ahmed Bhutto, the BSP MLA from Agra who was expelled last year, and is now the in-charge of Aligarh’s ‘’Bhaichara’ committee for the next assembly polls.