Updated: February 18, 2020 5:00:47 am
The issue of Dalits being allegedly beaten up in a Kanpur village and the alleged threat to the life of Samajwadi Party chief Akhilesh Yadav rocked the UP Assembly on Monday.
The Question Hour in the Assembly was washed out with Samajwadi Party alleging that there was a threat to the life of their party chief and former chief minister Akhilesh Yadav from leaders of the ruling BJP. As soon as the House assembled, Leader of Opposition, Ram Govind Chaudhary, raised the issue, saying a person had raised slogans and threatened Akhilesh at a party event. Alleging that members of Local Intelligence Unit were visiting the office of Samajwadi Party, the SP leader said that Akhilesh got threats on his mobile phone and demanded an immediate discussion on it.
As Speaker Hriday Narayan Dixit rejected the request, the SP members got furious and rushed to the well of the House, shouting slogans against the government. The Speaker had to adjourn the House repeatedly.
When the House reassembled, Parliamentary Affairs Minister Suresh Khanna said that Akhilesh Yadav has already been provided ‘Z-Plus category security that comprises 182 security personnel led by an Additional SP rank officer, circle officer, six inspectors, 14 sub-inspectors besides CoBRA commando jawans. Usually, 56 security personnel guard a ‘Z-Plus’ protectee, but in his (Yadav’s) case, 182 personnel are posted, the minister said, adding that it was not a security breach but a “trivial” incident. Khanna said that there was no threat to anyone from any worker or leader of the BJP but entire society is under threat from the Samajwadi Party.
As the pandemonium continued, the Speaker adjourned the House till Zero Hour.
Akhilesh Yadav had recently claimed at a meeting that he had received a threat call and a message on his phone from a BJP leader. He made the allegation after a youth disrupted his meeting, shouting ‘Jai Shri Ram’.
The matter had its echo in the Upper House as well, with the Question Hour becoming a casualty amidst the din created by the SP members over alleged threat to their national president. As soon as the Legislative Council met in the morning, SP leader Ahmad Hasan raised the issue and alleged that security of Akhilesh Yadav was reduced and the BJP was trying to threaten the opposition.
When the leader of the House and Deputy CM Dinesh Sharma sought to know on which rule they were trying to raise the matter, SP members rushed to the Well of the House, raising slogans against the government.
Later in the day, Opposition Samajwadi Party, BSP and the Congress on Monday staged a walkout in the Assembly as they accused the BJP-led state government of being “insensitive” towards Dalits following the recent caste clashes at Mangta village in Kanpur where 25 people were injured.
Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath, however, dismissed the allegation and said every incident should not be seen through a “political prism” and local disputes should be resolved “locally”.
The matter was raised during Zero Hour by BSP leader Lalji Verma, who alleged that the state government was insensitive towards Dalits and demanded Rs 5 lakh compensation for each of the victims. He said that a day after posters for the Buddha katha were put up in the village, a group of people entered the village and beat up everyone, including women and children.
Congress Legislature Party Leader Aradhana Mishra Mona also joined him and demanded a judicial inquiry into the “serious” incident. As Leader of Opposition and SP leader Ram Govind Chaudhary also supported the demand made by the BSP and Congress, the Chief Minister told the Opposition not to “add fuel to fire” and allow peace to prevail. “It is a local issue and police have taken the necessary action. There is peace in the village… Why do we want to see everything from a political point of view? While an FIR has already been lodged under the SC/ST Act that would automatically ensure compensation for the victims,” the Chief Minister said.
Dissatisfied with the reply, Opposition SP, BSP and Congress MLAs staged a walkout from the House.
—With PTI Inputs
📣 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.