BENGALURU: A day after BJP MP Pratap Simha drove himself into a controversy after ramming his car through police barricade in Mysuru, a video of the MP detailing the agitation plans of the BJP Yuva Morcha has gone viral.
While the MP's conduct drew widespread condemnation from the Congress and JD(S), it didn't leave the state BJP leadership too pleased.
In the video, Simha purportedly talks about directions from party president Amit Shah to stage agitations with such intensity to draw lathi charge and tear gas shelling from the police.
The 37-second video clip explains the directions said to have been issued to BJP Yuva Morcha during Shah's visit to the city in November.
"Amit Shah asked Yuva Morcha members how many protests they had conducted in the past few days. He said that the Morcha should hold intense agitations. He asked if there are any protests where tear gas was fired or police had lathicharged? I told him, 'Sir, we haven't had such protests'. So, he asked us to hold protests with such intensity and we promised to conduct such protests in the future," the MP is seen saying in the video.
Reacting to the issue and video, state BJP president B S Yeddyurappa said that Simha has misunderstood the directions issued by Shah. "It seems that Pratap Simha has misunderstood the instructions of Shah. He (Shah) has only directed party members to take up public issues strongly and stage protests," Yeddyurappa said.
On Sunday, Simha was arrested for violating the route sanctioned by Mysuru district police to take out Hanuman Jayanthi procession. He was arrested along with his supporters for deviating from the route approved by the police. Police had to resort to lathi charge to disperse the gathering.
According to sources, Simha is keen to contest the forthcoming Assembly election from Hunsur and is emerging as a strong leader among the youth in the constituency. On Monday, Simha accused police officers, who arrested him, of behaving like political stooges. While the police officer who ordered the arrest said he had done his duty, chief minister termed Simha's act as unbecoming of an MP and said, "He seems to have no common sense."
Congress working president Dinesh Gundu Rao termed Sunday's incident as part of a broader strategy by BJP to incite communal violence for political gains ahead of the Assembly election.
"They are trying to create communal tension in the state on the directions of their party's national president. They are trying to use occasions like Hanuman Jayanti and Datta Jayanti for creating communal disturbance. That is the BJP's agenda and they will do more of it now as the state Assembly elections are approaching,'' Rao added.