The Hindu Jagran Manch (HJM) on Tuesday alleged that 10 of its workers were injured in police lathicharge at Aligarh while they staged a protest demanding the arrest of a cinema hall manager, who was booked in February for allegedly opening fire at two of it members. Police said they were compelled to use force after the protesters stopped visitors from entering the office of the senior superintendent of police, and “misbehaved” with them.
On Tuesday, a group of HJM workers blocked the main gate of the SSP’s office, after which police resorted to lathicharge to disperse them. The SSP was not present in the office at the time. No FIR has been lodged in connection with the incident.
HJM’s Aligarh district president Sonu Savita said, “On February 28, one Sudhir Sisodia, who is the manager of a cinema hall, had opened fire at two HJM workers following a heated argument over a monetary dispute. An FIR was then lodged in this connection at Civil Lines police station. Today we were demanding that police arrest the accused. We closed the doors of the SSP’s office during the protest. Without listening to our demands, police came out of the building and started hitting us with sticks. Ten of our workers were injured.”
Station House Officer of Civil Lines police station Javed Khan said Sisodia had been booked under charges including attempt to murder, criminal intimidation as well as the SC/ST Act. “Investigation of the case is on. HJM workers were forcing us to arrest Sudhir in the case today,” Khan added.
Additional Superintendent of Police, City (Aligarh), Atul Kumar Srivastava said, “Protesters closed the gates of the SSP office and blocked the road. We tried to pacify them, but they did not relent and kept demanding that Sudhir be arrested today. When protestors stopped the entry of visitors into the SSP’s office and misbehaved with them, we were forced to use force to disperse them.”
He said that Sisodia too had gotten an FIR lodged against HJM leaders when they had allegedly staged a protest outside his cinema hall over screening of the film ‘Ram-Leela’. “The case has reached the stage of trial,” he added.