New Delhi, March 06: In a huge embarrassment for BJP, party MP Sharad Tripathi and party’s Uttar Pradesh MLA Rakesh Singh Baghel exchanged heavy blows in public after an argument broke out between the two over placement of names on a foundation stone of a project in Sant Kabir Nagar.
The shocking incident took place during the District Coordination Meeting, where top public officials convene to review development projects and other work in the area.
The fight broke out after a fuming Tripathi, who represents the district, asked why his name was not included on the foundation stone for a local road. Baghel, Vidhan Sabha Member from Menhdawal constituency in the district, said it was his decision.
The argument quickly devolved into obscenities with Baghel daring his opponent to ask the questions “to his shoe”. An enraged Tripathi immediately removed his shoe and started hitting Baghel with it. In retaliation, Baghel slapped the MP.
The two traded substantial amount of blows before other party members and police could intervene and end the fight.
Later, Baghel and a large number of his supporters protested outside the district magistrate’s office demanding Tripathi’s arrest.
The BJP is yet to say what action it will take against the leaders. “We have taken cognizance of this condemnable incident and both have been summoned to Lucknow. Strict disciplinary action will be taken,” UP BJP president MN Pandey told news agency ANI.
Opposition leaders attacked the BJP over the disgraceful incident.
“Today in Uttar Pradesh, a parliamentarian and a legislator of the party – that claims to the world’s most disciplined – respectfully exchanged blows with their shoes. This is the frustration of the BJP that is expecting a defeat in the upcoming elections.The truth is that the BJP is not being able to find candidates for the polls,” Akhilesh Yadav said in a sarcastic tweet.
आज उप्र में विश्व की सबसे अनुशासित राजनीतिक पार्टी का दावा करनेवाली भाजपा के सांसद व विधायक जी के मध्य जूतों का सादर आदान-प्रदान हुआ.
यह आगामी चुनावों में अपनी हार से आशंकित भाजपा की हताशा है. सच तो ये है कि लोकसभा चुनाव लड़ने के लिए भाजपा को प्रत्याशी ही नहीं मिल रहे हैं. pic.twitter.com/gtbDrsdtAV
— Akhilesh Yadav (@yadavakhilesh) March 6, 2019
Sharad Tripathi, 47, is the Lok Sabha member from Sant Kabir Nagar. He has a verified Twitter profile whose bio reads “NATION ALWAYS COMES FIRST”.
Rakesh Singh Baghel, 52, is the Vidhan Sabha Member from Menhdawal and is associated with the “Hindu Yuva Vahini”, the right-wing group founded by Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath, infamous for incidents of moral policing and attacks on minorities.
(With inputs from NDTV)