Congress MLA from Rajkot East constituency, Indranil Rajyaguru and four others were arrested after they allegedly led a group of supporters and pulled down compound wall at Raiyadhar slum pocket in the city on Friday morning.
Rajyaguru, Atul Rajani and Karshan Sagathiya, both Congress corporators in the Rajkot Municipal Corporation (RMC), Kashmira Nathwani, general secretary of Gujarat Pradesh Congress Committee (GPCC) and Bhavesh Boricha, a Congress worker led a mob of 50 persons at the Raiyadhar slum in north-west Rajkot at around 10 am. As the MLA had announced on Thursday, they brought down the compound wall of the plot which has been cleared of huts for redevelopment of the slum pocket on public-private partnership (PPP) basis.
As the crowd indulged in rioting, throwing bricks and blocks of the wall down, Cube Construction, a private firm which has been awarded the redevelopment project by the RMC, called police. Gandhigram police detained Rajyaguru, Rajani, Sagathiya, Nathwani and Boricha from the stop and dispersed the mob.
Later on, Jay Jobanputra, an employee of Cube Construction filed a police complaint at Gandhigram police station at 12:30 pm. Acting on the complaint, Gandhigram police booked the five and a mob of 50 for rioting and criminal conspiracy. Subsequently, Rajayguru and the four others were arrested.
City police commissioner Mohan Jha could not be reached for his comment immediately.
The MLA has been alleging corruption in award of the redevelopment contract to Cube Construction by claiming the civic body has given land to the private developer at low premium. However, municipal commissioner Vijay Nehra has refuted the allegations by repeatedly stressing that the firm which offered the highest amount of premium to the RMC was awarded the contract.
As part of the project, Cube Constrution, through help of RMC, had demolished around 200 huts in Raiyadhar last month. The private developer will provide one-bedroom-hall-kitchen dwelling units to around 250 families who were living in shanities in the area, on parts of the land cleared of huts. Cube Construction will have the right to develop remaining part of the plot after paying premium to the RMC.