Ahead of the Gujarat Assembly elections, a violent conflict broke out between Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) and Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) workers for second day in a row. Yesterday, the activists, including the councilors of AAP, who were protesting in the Gatroj Surat Municipality, were beaten up by the police and other authorities. During this scuffle, female councilor Kundan Kothia’s clothes were torn, while two male corporators were injured.
In order to question and protest yesterday’s violent clash, AAP members, under the leadership of Gopal Italia went to Surat BJP headquarters. Here, BJP workers attacked Italia and beat him up fiercely. AAP leader was surrounded by at least five men and was out-numbered.
AAP member Dinesh Kachhadia as well as party in-charge of South Gujarat Ram Dhaduk were also assaulted during the clash. Many other AAP leaders were injured severely in Surat. All this happened in the presence of the police. BJP workers were raising slogans of Khalistan Murdabad and Bharat Mata ki Jai. The same AAP workers had posters against C.R. Paatil in their hands.
After being informed that the AAP members were coming to Surat office, BJP leadership had called the police as well as the office bearers of its Yuva Morcha and Minority Morcha. When the AAP leaders reached the spot, the scuffle broke out and the police also tried to arrest some of them.
10 arrested including Gopal Italia
Late in the evening, on the basis of the complaint registered by Assistant Sub-Inspector Dharmendra Jhala of Udhna Police station on violation of notification of the Commissioner of Police against 16 leaders of AAP along with Gopal Italia and Ram Dhaduk, under Sections 143, 145, 146, 147 of the Indian Penal Code. A case has been registered against 16 people including Mathur Baldadiya, Shravan Joshi, Jagendra Singh Rathod. 10 leaders including Gopal Italia, Ram Dhaduk, Mathur Baldadiya, Shravan Joshi, Jagendra Singh Rathod have been arrested and sent behind bars.
Speaking to Vibes of India, city BJP chief Nirajan Jhanjhamera said, “What was the need for AAP to come to the BJP office? AAP just wants to create tension, they tried to attack our workers.”
On the other hand, AAP’s Isudan Gadhvi said, “People of Gujarat are watching how BJP members and workers violently attacked us in the presence of police. Neither did our workers initiate the clash nor did they fight back.”
Following the incident, AAP supremo Arvind Kejriwal tweeted, “Look at these goons, they are openly beating up. They have committed hooliganism all over the country. Will such a country move forward? These people will never give good education, employment to your children. They bring in unemployed goons because they want to play politics!”
“All patriotic youth will have to unite against them,” General Gujarat in-charge Gulab Singh took BJP in the dock by tweeting one after the other. He wrote that since 2 days the goons of @CRPaatil are AAP workers in a barbaric manner. These goons never beat the people of Congress, which clearly shows that both are the same party.
After the Surat incident, the state BJP leadership thought that AAP workers might also hold protest at Kamalam office in Gandhinagar. Hence, a DYSP and a PI were deployed here. Security was tightened and Yuva Morcha workers were also stationed here. However, when after a few hours there was no sign of AAP, everything went back to how it was at Kamalam.