July 1, 2021 1:52:40 am
An Aam Aadmi party (AAP) worker was injured after a group of men allegedly showed black flags, threw stones and vandalised vehicles of a party convoy that was going to meet the kin of those who died of Covid in Leriya village of Visavadar taluka of Junagadh district on Wednesday.
Hours later, Delhi Chief Minister and AAP chief Arvind Kejriwal posted on social media that he had spoken to Gujarat Chief Minister Vijay Rupani over the incident and demanded protection to AAP workers.
The incident comes two days after a group showed black flags to Gujarat AAP president Gopal Italia at Somnath temple in Gir Somnath district.
Pravin Ram, an activist who joined the AAP on Tuesday, told The Indian Express, “As we approached the village, a group of around 50 men wielding iron pipes started pelting stones on our convoy and vandalised cars of Isudan Gadhvi and Mahesh Savani… AAP worker Haresh Savaliya sustained serious injuries on his head and was taken to a hospital in Visavadar town.”
Gadhvi later told the media that the mob attacked the AAP convoy in the presence of police. “The situation in Gujarat is turning very serious.
The administration was a passive witness to the incident,” he said even as other AAP workers alleged that the group that attacked them were of BJP workers.
Kirit Patel, president of Junagadh district unit of BJP, denied the charge. “We have nothing to do with this issue. They were not BJP workers but people from the Brahmin community and they were demonstrating peacefully the way they did in Somnath. However, people driving in three-four cars at the head of the convoy hurled abuses at them,” Patel said.
“There was a police car and a few policemen present on the spot. But they could do little to protect us,” said Ram, adding they were visiting Leriya village as part of their ongoing Jan Samvedna Yatra to meet the kin of those who died of Covid-19 recently.
Superintendent of Junagadh district police, Ravi Teja Vasamsetty, confirmed that a police party was present in the village when the incident took place. “However, there was some violence before reinforcement could reach the spot. Eventually, they dispersed the group. We are in the process of registering an offence,” the SP said.
The Delhi CM later wrote on Twitter: “Spoke to Vijay Rupani ji. Urged him to file FIR, arrest the culprits, ensure strong action against culprits and ensure protection of AAP leaders and workers.”
“If people like Isudan and Mahesh bhai (Savani) are being attacked in full public view, nobody in Gujarat can be safe… Win hearts of people by ensuring good facilities for them but kindly do not intimidate the Opposition by orchestrating attacks on them,” Kejriwal wrote in another post.
📣 The Indian Express is now on Telegram. Click here to join our channel (@indianexpress) and stay updated with the latest headlines
- The Indian Express website has been rated GREEN for its credibility and trustworthiness by Newsguard, a global service that rates news sources for their journalistic standards.