press trust of india
MEERUT/MUZAFFARNAGAR, 21 SEPT: Continuing its crackdown on those involved in the Muzaffarnagar violence, Uttar Pradesh Police today arrested BJP legislator Sangeet Som and BSP MLA Noor Saleem Rana even as BJP president Rajnath Singh was prevented from touring the riot-hit district.
The arrests come a day after Uttar Pradesh Police took into custody BJP MLA Suresh Rana in Lucknow on charges of making provocative speech to incite riots in Muzaffarnagar.
“While BJP MLA Som was arrested in Meerut district, BSP legislator Noor Saleem Rana has been arrested from Muzaffarnagar,” IG (law and order), R K Vishwakarma said.
Mr Som, accused of uploading a fake video that played a role in provoking communal tension in Muzaffarnagar and making inflammatory speeches, was arrested in Meerut.
SSP Deepak Kumar said that Mr Som was arrested from the Salava village in his constituency Sardhana amid slogan-shouting by his supporters. Though police said they had arrested him, the supporters of the legislator claimed he had surrendered before Sardhana police.
“I will abide by the law in spite of the fact that this is a false case against me. I will respond in court. They (the SP, the BSP) have instigated the riots….We (BJP MLAs) are being made soft targets,” Mr Som told reporters.
Two former SP MLAs resign
Blaming the SP for the recent Muzaffarnagar riots, two former legislators today resigned from the party.
The father-son duo of Mahak Singh and Ajay Kumar have alleged that if desired the administration could have stopped the Muzaffarnagar riots, that erupted following an eve-teasing incident in the adjoining Kawal village on 27 August. “Akhilesh Yadav, obviously, is responsible for the riots,” they said. Mr Mahak Singh has been the Rashtriya Lok Dal (RLD) MLA from Chaproli constituency in 1991-92 and later joined the SP. While his son Ajay Kumar won the elections from the same place in 2004 on RLD ticket.
Meanwhile, BJP MLA Suresh Rana was today remanded to 14 days judicial custody by a local court here which also rejected his interim bail plea.
An MLA from Thana Bhawan in Shamloi district, Mr Rana, who was arrested in Lucknow yesterday, was produced in the court of Additional Judicial Magistrate Sunder Lal this morning.
The court, while rejecting his interim bail application, fixed 24 September as the next date for hearing on permanent bail application.
‘Riot issue to be raised at NIC meeting’
Patna, 21 Sept: Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar today said that the communal violence at Muzaffarnagar would be raised at the upcoming National Integration Council Meeting. Stating that his government was proactive in quelling communal disturbances, Mr Kumar said district magistrates and superintendents of police were accountable for the outbreak of communal violence in their districts. Mr Kumar was speaking to reporters at Patna Airport after returning from a three-day trip to Delhi where he met Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, Union Finance Minister P Chidambaram and Union Agriculture minister Sharad Pawar over drought in 33 of 38 districts in the state, said. pti