Udupi: The bandh call given by the Congress and several other organisations to condemn fuel price hike took a violent turn in Udupi leaving several BJP and Congress party workers injured. The police had resorted to lathi-charge to bring the clashing BJP and the Congress factions under control on Monday.
However, taking up this issue, the Congress leaders have decided to meet the district in-charge minister and demand probe into the lathi-charge episode.
Former ministers Vinay Kumar Sorake and Pramodh Madhwaraj visited the injured party workers in district government hospital and later speaking to reporters, they said that the Congress leaders were protesting peacefully and the situation turned violent only due to provocation from the BJP.
"The Congress workers have right to protest. The protesters were staging stir peacefully when the police resorted to lathi charge. Five Congress workers including a couple of elected representatives have been injured. We will inform about the incident to the district in-charge minister. If the police did not have a valid reason to resort to canning, we will take up the matter seriously and stage a stir. We need proper probe into the lathi-charge incident, " he said.
Meanwhile, Madhwaraj said that traders and vendors were urged on Sunday itself to support the bundh and on Monday, bodu was forced to comply.
"The lathi charge incident will be condemned," he said adding that the SP himself was seen hitting a Congress leader.
"When I was the minister the BJP had protested many times and the Congress never created any problems. However, today the BJP ensured that the bundh called for by the Congress turned ugly," he said.
MLA and BJP leader Raghupathi Bhat too visited injured BJP workers and said that the incident turned violent only because the Congress was forcing people to comply. He alleged that the Congress workers were forcefully closing down shops in various places in the city, forced an auto driver to remain off road and also destroyed the shop of a vegetable vendor at Car Street. The Congress workers also assaulted one woman at Kadiyali, claimed Bhat.
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