Gujarat: Clash between supporters of Congress, BJP candidates in Danta Assembly seat on poll eve; cross FIRs lodged
Rahul Gandhi said in a tweet late night claimed the party's tribal leader and Danta Assembly seat candidate Kantibhai Kharadi was brutally attacked by BJP goons and then went missing
Palanpur: Supporters of the Congress and Bharatiya Janata Party candidates from Danta Assembly seat in Gujarat’s Banaskantha district allegedly clashed with each other after a collision between the vehicles of the two leaders, police said on Monday.
No one was injured in the incident which took place at around 10.30 pm on Sunday, Banaskantha Superintendent of Police (SP) Akshayraj Makwana told PTI.
Congress leader Rahul Gandhi said in a tweet late night claimed the party’s tribal leader and Danta Assembly seat candidate Kantibhai Kharadi was brutally attacked by BJP goons and then went missing.
SP Makwana said Kharadi, the sitting MLA from Danta seat, and BJP nominee Latu Parghi levelled allegations that they were attacked by each other’s supporters with deadly weapons after a collision between their vehicles.
Danta, reserved for the Scheduled Tribe candidates, is one of the 93 seats where voting is underway on Monday in the second phase of the state Assembly elections.
Makwana said First Information Reports (FIRs) were registered against members of both the sides at Danta police station under Indian Penal Code sections pertaining to unlawful assembly, rioting armed with deadly weapons, criminal intimidation, intentional insult as well as provisions of the Motor Vehicles Act and the Gujarat Police Act.
“As per the complaints, the vehicles in which Kharadi and Parghi were travelling collided near Danta after which the supporters of the two leaders clashed. Police reached the spot soon thereafter and met both the leaders,” he said.
It took a couple of hours for the police to contact Kharadi who denied being kidnapped, he said.
“As per Kharadi’s complaint, he and his supporters were attacked by BJP leader Parghi and his supporters after their vehicles collided with each other. Both the sides have made similar allegations against each other and cross FIRs have been lodged,” Makwana said.
Police questioned the two leaders and their supporters and further investigation was underway into the incident, he said.
“Members of both the groups were medically examined and none of them was found to have received any injury,” the official said
Rahul Gandhi said in a tweet said, “Congress tribal leader and Danta Assembly candidate, Shri Kantibhai Kharadi was brutally attacked by BJP goons and is now missing.
“Congress had demanded from the EC for deployment of an additional paramilitary force, but the commission kept sleeping. Listen BJP – we are not afraid, we will not be afraid, we will fight firmly,” Gandhi added.
Jignesh Mevani, the Congress candidate from Vadgam seat in the same district, also tweeted saying, “Congress candidate Kantibhai Kharadi from Danta constituency in Banaskantha has been attacked by the goons of BJP -a night before polling fearing their defeat. Is this how free and fair elections would be conducted.”
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