Thursday, February 13, 2020

Celebration of Amanatullah Khan’s victory in Meerut ends in lathi-charge

The police allegedly stopped the celebration on Tuesday evening and resorted to a lathi-charge to disperse the AAP MLA’s relatives and others in the village. AAP candidate Amanatullah Khan from Okhla constituency shows the victory sign along with his supporters outside Maharani Bagh counting centre.
AAP candidate Amanatullah Khan from Okhla constituency shows the victory sign along with his supporters outside Maharani Bagh counting centre.(Photo: Burhaan Kinu/ Hindustan Times)



Celebration over AAP leader Amanatullah Khan’s victory in the Delhi election cost his relatives heavily in his native village Agwanpur in Meerut.

Khan contested from the Okhla constituency and defeated Brahm Singh of the BJP by a margin of 71,827 votes.

The police allegedly stopped the celebration on Tuesday evening and resorted to a lathi-charge to disperse the AAP MLA’s relatives and others in the village. Male cops allegedly misbehaved with young girls, pulled hair of one, and compelled her to walk through the streets of the village to assist them in finding the MLA’s relatives who fled after the lathi-charge.

A case of violation of Section 144 was registered against 13 named and other unidentified villagers. AAP MLA’s relative Noorullah was mentioned as the main troublemaker, said villagers.

Samajwadi Party leader Atul Pradhan, district president of the party Rajpal Singh and former MLA Prabhudayal Valmiki visited the village and met Noorullah and other family members.

They accused the ruling BJP of excesses on people on the pretext of Section 144 and depriving them of sharing happiness with each other over the victory of their kin.

Noorullah and other villagers claimed that no procession was taken out. They said relatives of AAP MLA Amantullah were distributing sweetmeats and villagers also called a ‘dholwala’ to celebrate the victory.

According to the villagers, the police arrived there and ordered to stop the celebration in wake of Section 144 imposed in the district. A ruckus ensued when villagers were lathi-charged. All male members fled from the spot, apprehending that they would be taken into custody.

Nazmi, 22, a student of MA, said a few cops went to the rooftop of a house and queried about male members from girls and women. “They misbehaved with Noorullah’s 17-year-old daughter Zaina and also tried to drag me downstairs,” she said.

She fell on the ground and cops pulled her with her hair and compelled her to walk through the village along with them for over an hour to identify places where male members could have hidden.

“They kept pushing and abusing me to keep pace with them and relented only when I lost all my energy to walk,” said a visibly frightened and anguished Nazmi.

A red mark was still visible around her neck, which she said developed after a cop forcibly pulled her ‘dupatta’.

Meanwhile, the police also allegedly beat up a poor shopkeeper Hakimuddin who sustained injuries in his right leg. “I was returning home after closing my shop to see my sick wife when cops caught me and started beating me,” he said.

Villagers Mohd Noman, Shahid, Abid and others claimed that police beat up whoever came in their way.

Speaking to HT over phone, AAP MLA Amantullah Khan said such incidents in UP were a fallout of what he described as “politics of hate”. He asked: “What’s wrong if police found my relatives celebrating my victory in the village.”

However, SHO of Parikshatgarh police station Kailash Chand refuted the allegations against cops. He said: “They are concocting stories to build false accusations against cops.”

He said the villagers had been booked on charges of violating Section 144. “The villagers were taking out a procession and we stopped them in wake of Section 144 in the district and no force was applied against villagers,” claimed SHO.-HT



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