2 BJP MLAs begin indefinite sit-in on removal of saffron flags in MP

The move came after a violent clash erupted between Sangh Parivar, BJP and Christians over saffron flags downing at Jobat town.

Published: 12th May 2016 01:07 AM  |   Last Updated: 12th May 2016 08:54 AM   |  A+A-


ALIRAJPUR: Two local BJP MLAs today launched an indefinite sit-in and called for a bandh in Jobat town near here, protesting the district administration's move to remove saffron flags from the road in view of the three-day annual Christian meet beginning tomorrow.

The move came last night, days after a violent clash erupted between the Sangh Parivar, BJP and Christians over the saffron flags downing at Jobat town, about 30 kms from here.

BJP Jobat MLA Madho Singh Dabar and Alirajpur MLA Nagar Singh Chauhan squatting at the main road of Jobat against their own government said the district administration and police have unilaterally removed the flags put up at the road dividers.

"We want the District Collector, Shekhar Verma, and the Superintendent of Police, Kumar Sourabh, to apologise and reinstate the saffron flags that were put up on Ram Navami," Chauhan told PTI.

Both the officials with heavy police force had got the flags removed last night, he alleged, adding the move has hurt the Hindus' sentiments.

"Our protest and Jobat bandh will continue till our demands are met," he said. "We want the flags to remain put till May 21- when the ongoing Simhastha-Kumbh mela ends.

"The flags have been removed taking in account the law and order situation. We took into confidence both the MLAs yesterday before getting the flags removed," Collector Verma told PTI.

"What the MLAs are doing is unfortunate," he added.

The Collector contended that the flags were removed after Jobat Nagar Parishad Chief Municipal Officer (CMO) Mahima Ram Peple wrote to the administration demanding removal of the flags.

Two communities had hurled stones at each other after saffron flags put up near a church were found damaged.

Subsequently a Church's gate lamps were broken allegedly by a mob of right wing outfits in the early hours on May 4.

Following the incident, police had arrested six persons including three suspected members of right-wing organisations, apart from as many others for allegedly damaging the flags put up near the church during Ram Navmi festival.

BJP district unit president Rakesh Agrawal and others were booked on charges of rioting, defiling place of worship and misbehaving with women under Jobat police station area on the complaints of a pastor of Zion Church and a woman then.

Members of minority community too were booked on similar charges.

Meanwhile, Chouhan claimed that the bandh in Jobat was peaceful and successful.


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