Hundreds of Congress workers as well as UPCC chief Ajay Kumar Lallu and Congress legislative Party (CLP) leader Aradhana Mishra were detained by police in Lucknow on Tuesday morning as they protested against the arrest of UPCC Minority Cell chief Shahnawaz Alam by Lucknow Police for his alleged role in violent anti-CAA protests in the state capital last year.
The police arrested Congress leaders and workers, including Lallu and Mishra, when they were going from the party office to register their protest on the illegal arrest. They were released at 4 pm.
In his statement, Lallu said the BJP-run state government is following a suppressive policy and the police is routinely trampling democracy in the state.
"The late night arrest of the Minorities Wing chief Shahnawaz Alam is illegal, undemocratic and condemnable. The BJP government can suppress other political parties from raising the voice by misusing the police force to quell opposition, but Congress will not relent. The police action was oppressive and undemocratic,” he added.
Condemning the UP Police, Mishra said the step taken by the state government was vindictive and cowardly. “The government wants to surpass the voice of opposition. The nervousness of the Yogi government from the growing influence of the party is now evident,” she said.
UP Congress Scheduled Caste Wing vice-chairman Tanuj Punia, who was also present at the protest, said the "foot soldiers of the Rahul-Priyanka brigade cannot be browbeaten with state-sponsored oppression and will fight it out on the streets".
Alam is considered to be a close aide of AICC general secretary Priyanka Gandhi.