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Punjab: Scuffle Breaks Out Between Farmers, Akali Workers Over MP Harsimrat Badal's Visit

Former Union minister Harsimrat Kaur Badal accused Congress workers of holding a protest against her under the garb of farmers. (Image: NARINDER NANU/AFP)

Former Union minister Harsimrat Kaur Badal accused Congress workers of holding a protest against her under the garb of farmers. (Image: NARINDER NANU/AFP)

Both the factions accused each other of opening fire in the air and indulging in physical assault, while police said they were investigating the matter.

A scuffle erupted between a group of farmers and some Akali activists following a protest against the visit of former union minister Harsimrat Kaur Badal in Ferozepur on Wednesday. Both the factions accused each other of opening fire in the air and indulging in physical assault, while police said they were investigating the matter.

The incident took place when Shiromani Akali Dal leader and Bathinda MP Harsimrat Kaur Badal was here to attend some programmes to drum up support for her party for the upcoming assembly polls. Earlier, she went to Hussainiwala to pay respects to the martyrs, and later she arrived in the city where farmers and Congress workers protested against her visit.

Farmers said they wanted to meet the former minister but they were not allowed to do so. Harsimrat accused some Congress workers of holding a protest against her under the garb of farmers and also attacking Akali leaders, including Vardev Singh Mann and Joginder Singh Jindu.

She demanded that Congress workers be booked immediately. Meanwhile, the Samyukta Kisan Morcha (SKM), in a statement, alleged that some Akali leaders tried to run over some farmers in Ferozepur, a claim vehemently denied by the party.

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Akali leader Vardev Singh Mann alias Noni refuted allegations, saying he himself had a narrow escape as some Congressmen under the garb of farmers allegedly fired upon him and attacked his vehicle which was damaged in the incident. Mann also alleged that his gunman was thrashed and his uniform torn apart.

Local Congress leader Rinku Grover denied that his party had any role in the incident. Grover said they wanted to question the absence of Ferozepur MP Sukhbir Badal, who has seldom visited this constituency after getting elected from this Lok Sabha segment.

Ferozepur senior superintendent of police Harmandeep Singh Hans said police had made all precautionary arrangements to prevent any untoward incident, however, the two SAD leaders took a different route without intimation to the police and got into a scuffle with the farmer union members. The SSP said the Akali workers and the union alleged assault on their respective members regarding which the police recorded their statements.

Police are verifying their claims following which action will be taken, the SSP said.

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first published:November 11, 2021, 00:55 IST