Indian Express

Yogendra Yadav stages protest against attacks by ‘Congmen’

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AAP convener Arvind Kejriwal in Ramana village near Varanasi Saturday.  PTI  AAP convener Arvind Kejriwal in Ramana village near Varanasi Saturday. PTI

AAP leader Yogendra Yadav Saturday staged a silent protest against attacks on party workers allegedly by Congress workers in Amethi Saturday,

Yogendra was accompanied by nearly two dozen party workers, including the victims, who held placards during Congress vice-president Rahul Gandhi’s road show in Amethi.

Leading the protest in the afternoon as Rahul’s cavalcade passed by, Yogendra said: “Since morning there have been five incidents in which AAP volunteers and workers were beaten up by Congressmen. They were carrying Congress flags and were saying ‘how dare you challenge Rahul Gandhi?’

“Recognising me, Rahul waved at me. I said you are waving your hand but your workers are raising their hands,” Yogendra told reporters.

Yogendra said the last attack happened as recently as “about 20 minutes before their protest”. Sitting next to him was Inder Kumar Yadav with a fractured arm. “About four of us were distributing publicity material when a vehicle started following us. So we stopped at a petrol pump station and about 8-10 men started arguing, saying you can’t defeat Rahul. Then they started beating us,” said Inder Kumar Yadav.

“There were two vehicles, they snatched our posters and other material,” added Deepak Jain, another AAP worker.

“Congress is frustrated. Has the Emergency even ended in Amethi? What kind of democracy is it?” Yogendra said, adding the attacks have been happening over the last two months. “But since this morning five incidents have taken place. They have been intimidated, they have been slapped, a driver is missing; this is no way.”

Also accompanying him were AAP’s Sitapur candidate Shefali Misra and TV artiste Raghu Ram.

Former Delhi Law minister Somnath Bharti a total of seven attacks had taken place by evening. “In these attacks three persons have received serious injuries while nearly ten have received minor ones; we are filing a consolidated FIR in Gauriganj,” Bharti told The Indian Express.

“In another incident, they tried to set an AAP vehicle on fire,” he said.

Later, AAP also released pictures of the alleged attacker and the vehicle used by attackers.

Responding to a question by The Indian Express , Rahul, on way to his third maha-chaupal of the day in Amethi, declined to comment on the protest by AAP, saying: “I have a line-up here, let me do some work.”

Late at night, AAP workers also took out a candlelight march in protest against the attacks.

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