FACTIONAL FIGHT between Congress workers in Bareilly on Thursday evening left a district committee office-bearer seriously injured. The incident took place during the Rahul Sandesh Yatra, which was led by AICC secretary Shakil Ahmad in Sirauli town.
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“When we reached Sirauli, youth leader Ashfaq Saqlaini, along with 15 others, attacked us with sticks and sharp-edged weapons instead of welcoming us. The party’s district general secretary, Mohit Gupta, sustained serious injuries,” said Ramdev Pandey, the party’s district unit president. He added that Saqlaini and his aides attacked others too, including him and city president Chaudhary Aslam Mian.
The assailants also looted Rs 1.80 lakh from Gupta’s car, alleged Pandey, adding Congress president Raj Babbar has been informed about the incident,” said Pandey. Following the incident, Gupta was taken to the primary health centre in Ram Nagar, from where he was later referred to a private hospital in Bareilly.
When contacted, Ashfaq Saqlaini, who claims to be president of the youth coordination committee of the Youth Congress in Aonla, said: “Mohit Gupta and his men abused me and my supporters and we asked him to behave. Later, Gupta and his men indulged in an altercation when some of my supporters hit him with a stick on his head.”
“District Congress president Ramdev Pandey is giving importance to ticket seekers and not loyal party workers. I was not informed that Rahul Sandesh Yatra would come to my area. The event was held in front of my house,” he added.
Sirauli Station Officer R K Singh said: “We have registered an FIR against Asfaq Saqlaini, Ishaq, Chotu and Kalim for assaulting Congress leaders during the Rahul Sandesh Yatra. We have also booked the accused for looting Rs 1.80 lakh in cash and a gold chain. We are probing the incident and action will be taken accordingly.”