MP Minister’s Attempt to Meet Rebel MLAs Leads to Scuffle With Cop
Jitu Patwari was taken into preventive custody by police following the incident.
A scuffle broke out between Congress leader Jitu Patwari and a police personnel on Thursday, 12 March, while Patwari was trying to meet the Madhya Pradesh rebel MLAs at Embassy Boulevard in Bengaluru.
Patwari was taken into preventive custody by police following the incident.
A video purportedly showing the minister engaged in a heated argument with the police has surfaced.
Patwari later called on newly appointed Karnataka Congress chief DK Shivakumar, considered a troubleshooter of the party, and alleged the MLAs at the resort were made to release videos stating that they had voluntarily decided to resign.
Talking to reporters, both Patwari and Shivakumar claimed one of the MLAs had telephoned his father and asked him to take him back to Bhopal.
Another MP minister Lakhan Singh, the father of the MLA and his brother went to the resort along with Patwari to meet him (the MLA) when they were “manhandled,” Shivakumar said.
Patwari alleged police forcefully took them to a police station and was starting the process of arrest when Shivakumar intervened and “saved us.”
Congress Condemns Police Action
The police action was condemned by the Karnataka Congress which demanded an apology from Chief Minister BS Yediyurappa.
“Our two ministers Jitu Patwari and Lakhan Singh, along with the father of a party legislator who is kept at a resort in Bengaluru, had gone to meet the MLAs but they were taken to a police station,” AICC general secretary Mukul Wasnik told reporters at a Jaipur resort where Congress MLAs from Madhya Pradesh are lodged since Wednesday.
Alleging the “misuse of power” by the BJP, the Congress leader said the saffron party was conspiring to topple the MP government. He said the party will launch an agitation if they were not released.
“It is very unfortunate. Such an attempt to shatter the democracy did not happen before,” he said.
The political crisis in Madhya Pradesh is thickening with at 22 Congress MLAs resigning from the party following Jyotiradity Scindia joining the BJP, putting the Kamal Nath government in the state in jeopardy.
Madhya Pradesh Assembly Speaker NP Prajapati has issued notices to the 22 MLAs who have resigned, asking them to appear before him by Friday and clarify whether they have quit voluntarily or under pressure, a legislature official told PTI on Thursday.
The BJP, meanwhile, has said it will seek a floor test in the Madhya Pradesh Assembly on 16 March, while the Congress said it is ready to face the test only after a decision on the resignations of the 22 MLAs.
Senior Congress leader Digvijaya Singh also sought to know why the MLAs were not meeting the Assembly speaker to submit their resignations.
The speaker has asked the 22 MLAs to appear before him by Friday to clarify whether they have resigned voluntarily or under any pressure, Vidhan Sabha principal secretary AP Singh told PTI.
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