Congress leader Priyanka Gandhi Vadra today accused Lucknow police personnel of grabbing her neck and pushing her to the ground while trying to prevent her from visiting the house of a retired IPS officer who has been arrested for opposing the Citizenship Amendment Act.
The Congress leader claimed that police personnel stopped her cavalcade while she was heading to the house of 76-year-old SR Darapuri, forcing her to hitch a ride on a party worker’s scooter. Upon being stopped again at another intersection two kilometres away, she decided to cover the rest of the way to Mr Darapuri’s residence at Sector 18, Indiranagar, on foot.
“The UP police stopped me while I was going to meet Darapuriji’s family. They grabbed me by the neck and manhandled me. They then surrounded me while I was going on a party worker’s two-wheeler, after which I walked to reach there,” news agency ANI quoted Priyanka Gandhi as saying.
#WATCH Lucknow: Congress General Secretary for UP (East) Priyanka Gandhi Vadra travelled on a two-wheeler after she was stopped by police while she was on her way to meet family members of Former IPS officer SR Darapuri. pic.twitter.com/aKTo3hccfd
— ANI UP (@ANINewsUP) December 28, 2019
A video of the incident shows the Congress leader walking along with supporters and members of her security detail when she is suddenly waylaid by a policewoman. A brief scuffle follows before she is allowed to proceed. However, the entire episode may not have been covered in the 17-second clip.
Priyanka Gandhi told news agency PTI that another woman officer even pushed her to the ground in the course of the scuffle. “I was surrounded by women policemen, and one of them held me by my throat. Another woman cop pushed me and I fell down. I was forcibly stopped and a woman officer pulled me up by my neck. But I was determined. I am standing with every citizen who has faced police oppression. This is my satyagraha,” it quoted her as saying.
The Congress leader said the police had no reason to stop her in this manner. “What should I say — they have stopped me in the middle of the road. They have no reason to stop me. Only God know why they have done this!” she told ANI.
Earlier today, the Congress leader had agreed to hear out a supporter who managed to breach her security at an event in the Uttar Pradesh capital.
Mr Darapuri, a cancer patient, was taken into custody from his Lucknow residence on charges of rioting earlier this week. Uttar Pradesh police officers confirmed on Thursday that as many as 1,113 people have been arrested from places across the state in connection with the agitation. They have also identified 498 people — with as many as 148 from Meerut alone — who will be asked to pay up for damage to public property.
(With inputs from Agencies)