Uttar Pradesh Congress chief Ajay Kumar Lallu Sunday alleged the state government has deployed armed police outside his residence here to stop him from going to Jhansi, a day after he was arrested briefly by the state police for taking out a march allegedly without permission. He accused the BJP-led government of ”muzzling” the voice of truth and trying to halt democratic protests. The police said the force has been deployed outside Lallu’s residence as they got a ”message from the District Magistrate of Jhansi that Ajay Kumar Lallu should not be allowed to come to Jhansi”.
Lallu and over 50 party workers were arrested in Lalitpur on Saturday after they tried to take out the Gai Bachao, Kisan Bachao (save cow, save farers)’ march without permission, but were released after a few hours, police had said. The Congress had also alleged Saturday that Lallu was untraceable for some time after his arrest.
"Yesterday, I was arrested in Lalitpur, and then released. However, the police took me to Chhatarpur in Madhya Pradesh, and when my not reaching Lucknow started trending on Twitter, I was brought to Lucknow in a hurried manner. I reached my residence in Lucknow at 2.00 am."
He also said, "Today (Sunday), I was scheduled to go to Jhansi, but there is police deployed outside my house."
"This undemocratic (BJP) government is hell-bent on unleashing atrocities. It wants to muzzle our voices. I have brought the ashes of cows from Lalitpur and will immerse them in Mandakini river in Chitrakoot."
He said PAC (Provincial Armed Constabulary) personnel brought in three trucks have been deployed outside his residence in Lucknow.
"Why is the government afraid if we just want to save the cows and the farmers, and take out a peaceful march," he asked.
"We cannot see cows and farmers die. The government should tell us a particular day when we can raise our voice against them and hold demonstrations," he said.
Meanwhile, UP Congress spokesperson Ashok Singh said, "Why it took the police so much time to bring Ajay Kumar Lallu from Jhansi to Lucknow. The police were unable to tell us the location of our leader."
When contacted, Additional Director General of Police (Law and Order) Prashant Kumar, said, "We have got a message from the District Magistrate of Jhansi that Ajay Kumar Lallu should not be allowed to come to Jhansi. Hence, police force has been deployed outside his residence."
On Lallu being taken to Chhatarpur Saturday, Kumar said, "It is possible that the state chief (of Congress) was taken to Chhatarpur, but he was brought to Lucknow in the night itself by a circle officer and sub-divisional magistrate."