SAMBALPUR: Former MLA and senior BJP leader Jayanarayan Mishra was arrested here on Wednesday for allegedly wielding a sword in violation of prohibitory orders by the administration during Hanuman Jayanti celebrations.
Two separate FIRs were registered against Mishra at the Dhanupalli and the town police stations for wielding a sword during the procession here on Tuesday.
Mishra’s action amounted to violation of prohibitory orders under Section 144 of CrPC, which had been imposed by the district administration as a precautionary measure to ensure peaceful celebration of Hanuman Jayanti.
Mishra, who was picked up from his party office here, however, claimed that he had not done anything “wrong” and that his arrest was part of a “political conspiracy.”
Mishra was sent to jail after his bail plea was rejected by the Court of SDJM.
The District BJP and Hanuman Jayanti Samanwaya Samiti (HJSS) called for a 12-hour Sambalpur bandh on Thursday in order to protest the arrest of Mishra and condemn the police action against him.
Mishra has been accused of wielding a sword thrice — the first one near a Hanuman Temple at Brooks Hill, then near Zilla School Chowk and finally when the procession reached Peer Baba Chowk late in the night.
The police picked Mishra up from the District BJP office on Wednesday and immediately shifted him to the Sambalpur Sadar Police Station.
Later, they brought him to the court amid high drama with BJP workers and Mishra supporters blocking the police vehicle.
Condemning the arrest, senior BJP leader Suresh Pujari said since the matter is sub judice, let law take its own course.
But Section 144 A of CrPC was enacted in 2005 and denotified in 2006 and hence not in existence, he observed. He said that under the circumstances, the entire procedure of promulgation of Section 144 A CrPC is null and void.