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61-year-old MP Farmer Spends Four Days in Jail For ‘Complaining About Bad Roads'

PK Purohit, a retired junior engineer with railways, was sent to jail by collector Abhay Verma allegedly after he complained about the state of roads during a public hearing on August 21.

Vivek Trivedi | News18

Updated:August 29, 2018, 9:37 PM IST
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61-year-old MP Farmer Spends Four Days in Jail For ‘Complaining About Bad Roads'
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Bhopal: Days after a 61-year-old farmer was jailed for complaining about the state of roads in his village, locals of Narsinghpur district took to the streets demanding his release.

PK Purohit, a retired junior engineer with railways, was sent to jail by collector Abhay Verma allegedly after he raised the issue during a public hearing on August 21. He was kept in custody for four days.

Verma, however, alleged that Purohit was creating nuisance as he was in an inebriated condition during the public hearing.

Narrating his ordeal, Purohit said he had approached the village sarpanch two years ago to get the road connecting his village Khurpa to nearby Chilachaun fixed, but he was sent to the PWD, which in turn asked him to approach the PM Gram Sadak Yojana office.

From there, Purohit was then sent to MP Road Development Corporation and other offices. With no resolution in sight, he said he decided to call the chief minister’s helpline in July and was asked to approach the district collector.

He said he went to the collector during a public hearing on August 21. Hearing his plea, district collector Verma sent him to PWD officer, who was absent, he said.

“As I went back to the collector and told him that I was roaming around for this work but got no response from anyone, he got furious,” Purohit said.

He added that the collector threatened to send him to jail even after he apologised repeatedly. “The SDM did not even meet me and sent me to jail through telephonic orders,” he said.

Purohit was initially denied bail, and was released after four days.

The state human rights commission has served a notice to the government and has ordered the Narsinghpur district administration to keep CCTV footage of the incident safe till the matter was pending in the court.

Rashtriya Kisan Mahasangh president Shivkumar Sharma ‘Kakkaji’, who led the recent farmer agitation, said Verma was the same collector who had “denied a small tent to former finance minister Yashwant Sinha during a chilly night and even ordered lathi charge on protesting women in night time inside collectorate.”

The MP government has not responded to the incident despite the Congress coming out in support of the farmer.
| Edited by: Padmaja Venkataraman
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