An All India Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen member in Aurangabad has been sent to judicial custody for a year, The Indian Express reported on Thursday. Sayyed Mateen Rashid has been booked under Maharashtra Prevention of Dangerous Activities of Slumlords, Bootleggers, Drug-Offenders and Dangerous Persons Act, 1981 or MPDA.
“Serious offences like arson, rioting, inciting mob for breach of communal harmony, creating alarm in society [invite action],” said Aurangabad Commissioner Chiranjeev Prasad. “Hence [the police were] left with no choice but to book him under MPDA. Other preventive actions failed to check him.”
Rashid was earlier arrested on Friday after he reportedly opposed a condolence resolution for former Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee in the municipal corporation. During a civic body meeting on Thursday, BJP corporator Raju Vaidya tabled a proposal to pay tributes to Vajpayee, who died on August 16 in New Delhi.
The motion was opposed by Rashid, after which corporators in the House, including the presiding officer who is the deputy mayor, allegedly thrashed him. Rashid was taken to a hospital, after which he was arrested for inciting communal violence on August 17. After he got bail, Rashid was arrested again, this time on charges pelting stones.
On Monday, All India Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen legislator Syed Imtiaz Jaleel and a delegation submitted a memorandum to the Divisional Commissioner of Aurangabad with CCTV video evidence from the House showing the Bharatiya Janata Party corporators attacking Rashid. The video shows the deputy mayor standing on a table and trying to kick Rashid.
“I asked the commissioner why he was waiting to take action against the BJP corporators,” Jaleel told Scroll.in. “I said that if my corporator has done anything, please take action against him. But you should also take action against them.”
Later that day, the police arrested five BJP corporators and brought them to City Chowk police station. They were all charged with non-cognisable offences and released on bail within two hours.
Rashid was granted bail on Tuesday, the day after the BJP corporators were arrested. But minutes after his release, a police team reached Harsul jail where he was lodged and served the order issued by the city police commissioner under MPDA. Rashid was then sent back to Harsul jail for a year.
Jaleel said there were two cases against Rashid, both of political nature. “While the party had condoled Vajpayee’s death, and I had issued a press release on it, Rashid never told us he was planning to oppose the resolution to pay tribute to the leader,” Jaleel said, adding that it was an “internal party matter”.
Jaleel said his party was preparing a show-cause notice for Rashid, asking him to explain why he deviated from the party line.
“Despite such a grave offence committed by BJP members, the police went slow on them and granted them bail,” Jaleel said. “We now plan to move the High Court challenging their bail and will make the police a party to it.”