- Priyanka Gandhi had alleged that she was manhandled by UP cops
- Shatrughan Sinha says this is no way to do damage control
- Dread to think what commoners would face, he adds
Actor-politician Shatrughan Sinha on Sunday questioned the alleged police action on Congress's Priyanka Gandhi, and in a message to Prime Minister Narendra Modi, suggested that this was no way to do "damage control". The Congress leader had alleged on Saturday that she had been manhandled and "grabbed by the throat" by policewomen as they tried to stop her from visiting the home of a retired police officer who was arrested after taking part in the protests against the citizenship law.
If the daughter of the Nehru-Gandhi family could be treated this way, "dread to think what commoners would face," Mr Sinha said in a series of tweets.
"First, you removed / downsized the security of VIPs, slowly but surely increased your security, then removed the #SPG cover of the Gandhi family & now, the #UPPolice under your Govt.'s instructions dealt with her in most shameful manner. This is highly condemnable," he posted on the microblogging site.
His tweets, he wrote, were for the "perusal, action & reaction" of the Prime Minister. Then added, "Aise, damage control nehin hota sir (This is no way to conduct damage control)".
The police had initially stopped Priyanka Gandhi Vadra's vehicle as she was on way to meet the family of 76-year-old SR Darapuri. She then took a ride on a scooter and when thwarted again, walked the rest of the way.
Videos from the spot showed Priyanka Gandhi being stopped by policewomen as she went on foot, surrounded by supporters and securitymen. After a brief scuffle, she managed to walk on.
"They grabbed me by the neck and manhandled me. They then surrounded me while I was going on a party worker's two-wheeler, after which I walked to reach there," news agency ANI quoted Priyanka Gandhi as saying.
She told news agency PTI that another woman officer even pushed her to the ground in course of the scuffle. "I was surrounded by women policemen, and one of them held me by my throat. Another woman cop pushed me and I fell down. I was forcibly stopped and a woman officer pulled me up by my neck. But I was determined. I am standing with every citizen who has faced police oppression. This is my satyagraha," PTI quoted her as saying.
Archana Singh, the policewoman in question, denied any manhandling, the UP police said. "She says that she was only trying to fulfil her duty to the best of her abilities," said Lucknow Senior Superintendent of Police Kalanidhi Naithani.