Lucknow: The Uttar Pradesh police lathicharged at a rally of Aam Aadmi Party in Lucknow on Friday evening. The AAP was protesting against the arrest of their two MLA’s in Delhi over charges of physically manhandling the state’s General Secretary.
The protest march which started from Gandhi bhavan was planned to culminate at Gandhi statue in Hazratnagar. But police first blocked and then broke the march near Commissioner’s office. The protest march was reportedly carried out under the instructions of AAP’s Uttar Pradesh state president, Sanjay Singh.
According to AAP sources, the police had asked them to stop when they were passing near the commissioner’s office but after doing so a force of police attacked the rally with batons. Several AAP volunteers in the rally have been seriously injured. Two people reportedly had fractures on their hands while one person’s head was busted open.
Huge chaos erupted around the area when police started the lathicharge as AAP volunteers as well as commuters started running haphazardly. However police took control of the situation quickly and was successful in pushing the AAP volunteers aside. More than half a dozen people have been hospitalized in Balarampur Hospital. The AAP state spokesperson Vaibhav Maheshwari alleged that the incident shows there is no democracy in centre and in state under BJP. “This only shows that there is no democratic right or permission for democratic protests under the Yogi government in the state and the Modi government in the Centre,” he said.
Superintendent of Police (SP) west, Vikas Tripathi, however, denied all allegations and said, “The protesters were marching towards Hazratganj, were raising slogans against the Prime Minister and the state CM and had even threatened to burn an effigy. This was a serious threat to the moving vehicles on the road. When an ambulance got stuck in the chaos, we were forced to take the step.”