BHOPAL: Former chief minister Digvijaya Singh’s hometown Raghogarh in Guna district (200 km from Bhopal) has become the latest flashpoint between the ruling BJP and the opposition Congress in Madhya Pradesh.
Prohibitory orders under Section 144 of CrPc have been clamped in Raghogarh town following violent clashes between the BJP and Congress workers on Friday late night, just a short while after chief minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan’s public meeting in the town where urban local body polls are slated on January 17.
Four to five persons were injured in the clashes between the workers of the two parties in the town late on Friday night. Importantly, the Congress MLA from Raghogarh assembly seat Jaivardhan Singh (son of Digvijaya Singh) and BJP MLA from Chachoura seat Mamta Meena were present in the town when the workers of both parties clashed with each other.
The Congress leaders, including Jaivardhan Singh, alleged that all those injured belonged to the Congress party.
Trouble started soon after the public meeting addressed by CM Shivraj Singh Chouhan in Raghogarh town. BJP workers and leaders alleged that some Congress workers entered the public meeting just when it was about to end and disrupted proceedings there.
While the CM left the town after addressing the meeting at around 10.30 pm, the workers of both parties clashed with each other in the town till the midnight, pelting stones on each other, despite the police trying to control the mob of both sides.
With the violence getting out of control, the Guna district administration clamped prohibitory orders in Raghogarh town to ensure peace in the town, which is among the few Congress bastion left unconquered by the BJP despite being in rule in MP for over 14 years.
Angered over the violence the local Congress MLA and Digvijaya Singh’s son Jaivardhan Singh demonstrated outside the Raghogarh police station all through Friday-Saturday intervening night, demanding lodging of criminal case against the BJP leaders and workers.
“Two cross FIRs have been lodged against nine people of one side and 11 people from the other side and so far three persons have been arrested. Prohibitory orders have been imposed in the town, where the situation is totally under control now,” Guna district collector Rajesh Jain told The New Indian Express on Saturday.
Meanwhile, the former CM and ex-Raghogarh MLA Digvijaya Singh, who is presently on a six month Narmada Parikrama in other parts of the state, appealed in a video to people of Raghogarh town to maintain peace and tranquillity. He also urged the local administration to act against the wrong-doers impartially, as working partially under any pressure could lead to serious consequences.
Singh’s brother and former Lok Sabha member Laxman Singh, who reached Raghogarh town on Saturday morning alleged that local administration and police were working under pressure of the ruling party. “We’re not being given permission to hold election rally on January 15, our local MLA Jaivardhan Singh took out rallies at his own risk after not being allowed to campaign. We can’t sit at home and just watch the anarchy unfold under pressure of ruling party. Our flags and banners are being torn and the election observer is remaining mute. If things don’t come to normal and the election observer isn’t changed we’ll boycott the urban body poll,” said Singh.
Reacting to Digvijaya Singh’s statement, the Guna district BJP president Radheyshyam Pareek said Singh’s statement cautioning local administration with serious consequences has exposed how committed he is to his six-month spiritual trek.