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Gujarat: PAAS convenor Katheriya among 150 booked for ‘beating up BTP workers’

The PAAS members allegedly beat up six party workers of the Bharatiya Tribal Party (BTP) after one of its members was found taking a video of the PAAS group outside a polling station in Velanja village, police said.

By: Express News Service | Surat |
February 23, 2021 2:00:37 am
Alpesh Katheriya, Patidar Anamat Andolan Samithi, Bharatiya Tribal Party, Surat Municipal Corporation, Surat news, indian expressAlpesh Katheriya, was among 150 persons booked for allegedly beating up Bharatiya Tribal Party (BTP) workers. (File)

Convenor of Patidar Anamat Andolan Samithi (PAAS), Alpesh Katheriya, was among 150 persons booked for allegedly beating up Bharatiya Tribal Party (BTP) workers for taking a video outside a polling station in Surat on Sunday while elections to the Surat Municipal Corporation was underway.

The PAAS members allegedly beat up six party workers of the Bharatiya Tribal Party (BTP) after one of its members was found taking a video of the PAAS group outside a polling station in Velanja village, police said.

A complaint was filed by one of the victims, Jaykishan Vasava — an auto driver, BTP member and a resident of Velanja village — at Kamrej police station on Sunday, following which an FIR was registered against PAAS Alpesh Katheirya and the other unidentified accused under IPC sections 143, 147, 148, 149, 323, 325, 395, 397, 504, 506 (2) and relevant sections of the Scheduled Castes and the Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Act.

Following the recent delimitation process, Velanja village in Kamrej taluka of Surat district was included under the Surat Municipal Corporation (SMC) limits. The area falls under Ward number 2 of the SMC, from where BTP candidate Vijaybhai Vasava contested the corporation polls.

According to police, Vasava’s supporters were standing outside Velanja village primary school and distributing slips to voters when around 150 youths arrived on bikes and cars, donning yellow-coloured skull caps bearing the inscription “Jay Sardar Jay Patidar”.

Vasava and six others were inside a car and a BTP member was taking a video of the scene, Vasava stated in his complaint. According to police, Katheirya was intimated that a youth was capturing a video of the PAAS group, leading to a heated exchange between them.

PAAS workers then beat up Vasava and his supporters with wooden sticks, pelted stones at them and later later fled the scene, Vasava said in his complaint.

“We then informed police and went to Surat New Civil Hospital for treatment with the help of some village youths,” he added. The other injured victims were identified as Ankit Gamit, Kiranbhai Gamit, Jenish Vasava, Jashprit Vasava and Sagar Rathod — all residents of Velanja village.

Police Inspector MM Gilatar said, “A quarrel ensued between the two groups, which later escalated to violence. We have lodged a complaint and arrests will be made soon… The condition of the injured victims is stable. We are collecting footage of the incident.”

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