BENGALURU: The massive bike rally protest organised by the Youth Congress on Sunday was overshadowed by excessive delay, traffic hold-ups, violation of traffic rules and participation of the expelled Youth Congress leader Mohammed Nalapad Haris.
Despite a ban of six years, Mohammed, son of Shantinagar MLA N A Haris, continued to participate in Youth Congress protest and also brazenly lead it. Sunday's bike rally in protest against the BJP and the Rafale deal was also led by Mohammed despite the presence of Youth Congress president Basanagouda Badarli. The protest that began two hours after the scheduled time saw hundreds of Congress workers riding bikes without helmets even as the traffic police stood as mute spectators.
The rally that was scheduled to begin at 11 am from Congress Bhavan on Race Course Road, was delayed by two hours. Police deployed at the venue stalled regular traffic to allow the rally, inconveniencing the public. While protesters intended to lay siege to the BJP office in Malleswaram, they were stopped at Seshadripuram and detained. “I am not here as a Congress party worker but as a common man,” Mohammed said. The former Youth Congress leader had used the same narrative when his presence was questioned during Youth Congress' protest outside HAL's corporate office earlier this month.
While reiterating that Mohammed is not part of Congress any more, KPCC Chief Dinesh Gundu Rao also said that those willing to take part in the protest in individual capacity can do so. “Mohammed remains expelled from the party. He is not invited to be a part of any party activity or recognised in party events but he is participating as a private individual. I will, however, have a word with the Youth Congress president,” Rao told Express.