Madhya Pradesh Bharatiya Janata Party disciplinary committee convener Babusingh Raghuvanshi said on Sunday that he was unsure if Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s criticism of indiscipline was directed at MLA Akash Vijayvargiya, who assaulted a civic official in Indore with a cricket bat last month, The Indian Express reported.
“Did he [the prime minister] name Akash?” Raghuvanshi asked during an interview with The Indian Express. “There were some other instances, maybe he referred to all of them together. Is there a sound byte or video of him saying what has been attributed to him?”
Raghuvanshi added that if Modi actually condemned the incident, it would be “more than a punishment”. “It will come to me only if the state BJP chief is unhappy with [Akash’s] reply to a notice, if it has been served,” Raghuvanshi said. “In any case, when a criminal offence is registered, it’s for the courts to take a call.”
Raghuvanshi also appeared to back Vijayvargiya. “I am also a lawyer, and when someone is provoked, like Akash was, the punishment is different,” he said without elaborating.
At a BJP Parliamentary Party meeting on July 2, Modi had said: “I don’t care whose son was behind the incident, it was completely unwarranted and not acceptable.” Akash Vijayvargiya is the son of BJP General Secretary Kailash Vijayvargiya.
On July 4, the BJP’s disciplinary committee issued Akash Vijayvargiya a show cause notice.
Akash Vijayvargiya, a member of the Madhya Pradesh Legislative Assembly, was arrested on June 26, and a case was filed against him. He was sent to judicial custody till July 7, but was granted bail three days later. When he was released from jail, supporters garlanded him and fired guns in the air.
Kailash Vijayvargiya had also defended his son and called him a “kaccha khiladi”, or a novice. He said his son’s actions were not of major concern.