The police in Shamli district of western UP are set to file an FIR against Samajwadi Party MLA from Kairana, Nahid Hasan, for allegedly trying to disrupt harmony in the region with his appeal to local people to “boycott” shops run by BJP supporters.
Hasan was seen making the appeal on a video, which has gone viral on social media.
“Some BJP people are conspiring; they have forced people to run their stalls at a particular place,” Hasan is heard saying. “Who will buy their (people purportedly asked to set up shop outside the local market) products here? Their employment has been snatched…. I request people of Kairana to boycott products from BJP supporters. It will be a pain for few days, but they will soon realise.”
Shamli SP Ajay Kumar Pandey said the police found it was not a doctored video. “At the end, he said ‘phaila do’, which meant he wanted the video to go viral,” Pandey said. “In view of any law and order situation, we have initiated the process of filing an FIR against the lawmaker since it was meant to incite passions.”
Owning up the video, Hasan said it was indeed his message, PTI reported. “Small traders from both communities are harassed by pro-BJP shopkeepers, who want to uproot small traders from their traditional marketplace. Here we (Muslims) are more and you are earning money from us…. This is my personal opinion,” he told PTI.
According to the district administration, vendors were earlier allowed to roam around, selling their products. Due to traffic issues, they were asked to move to a dedicated site, for which land has been earmarked, officials said.
District Magistrate Akhilesh Singh said: “There was illegal occupation on the land, which was later checked. Vendors were directed to do organised selling. Since vendors belong to all communities, for Nahid Hasan to say that the administration was discriminating against a particular community is inappropriate.”