A shoe was thrown at senior Samajwadi Party (SP) leader Swami Prasad Maurya by a man dressed as a lawyer during a party event in Lucknow today.
The shoe missed Mr Maurya but party workers overpowered and thrashed the man who threw it. Videos of the incident show Samajwadi Party workers roughing up the man in the presence of police personnel. The accused, identified as Akash Saini, was then taken to a hospital where he is currently under treatment.
“The accused has been taken to a hospital and further details will be known after questioning him,” Assistant Commissioner of Police (Lucknow) Aniandy Vikram Singh said as quoted by news agency PTI.
The incident happened at the Samajwadi Party’s convention at the Indira Gandhi Pratishthan, where party president Akhilesh Yadav was scheduled to speak.
“When the person who threw ink in Ghosi himself told that this work was done by BJP people, then what more to say now,” Mr Yadav wrote on X, formerly known as Twitter.
जब घोसी में स्याही फेंकनवाले ने ख़ुद ही बता दिया कि ये काम उससे भाजपाइयों ने ही करवाया है तो फिर अब आगे और क्या कहना। अभी आगे देखियेगा हार का डर भाजपा से क्या-क्या न कराए।
घोसी की जनता सपा की साइकिल ही चुनेगी। pic.twitter.com/XuXlIjeY6j
— Akhilesh Yadav (@yadavakhilesh) August 21, 2023
Mr Maurya, a prominent OBC leader in Uttar Pradesh, switched from the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) to the Samajwadi Party just before the 2022 state assembly elections.
The 69-year-old was recently at the centre of a controversy over his remarks on the Hindu epic Ramcharitmanas. Maurya claimed that some parts of the Ramcharitmanas are derogatory to a large segment of society based on caste and should be prohibited, drawing harsh criticism from all sides.