The Uttar Pradesh unit of the Bharatiya Janata Party has issued a show-cause notice to its MLA Surendra Singh for making statements in support of Dhirendra Pratap Singh, a party leader from Lucknow who has been arrested for shooting a man in the presence of the police in Ballia, PTI reported on Tuesday.
Uttar Pradesh BJP chief Swatantra Dev Singh said Surendra Singh has been given a week’s time to respond. “Yes, a notice has been issued to Surendra Singh, and he has been asked to refrain from making unnecessary statements,” Swatantra Dev Singh told reporters. “He has been given a week’s time to explain his stand.”
Dhirendra Singh was the the ex-president of the BJP’s local ex-servicemen unit. The police have so far arrested 10 accused in the case. A first information report has been filed against 30 persons, most of whom are yet to be identified.
The man, Jai Prakash, had died after bullets were fired during a meeting for allotment of shops under government quota in Durjanpur village of Ballia on October 15. Witnesses said Singh shot Prakash thrice. On October 17, the police said the accused in the case will be charged under the National Security Act and the Gangster Act.
After the shooting, BJP MLA Surendra Singh defended his party colleague, saying it was as an act of “self-defence” and accused the administration of “one-sided” investigation. Surendra Singh also claimed that had the accused not opened fire, dozens of his family members would have been killed.
Swatantra Dev Singh said the notice was issued to Surendra Singh on October 18. He added that BJP National President Jagat Prakash Nadda has sought information on the matter.
Surendra Singh, however, appears to remain defiant. On Monday, he told reporters that he stood on the side of justice. He said while the person who fired bullets has been arrested, action should also be taken against those who wielded sticks and pelted stones. “A case should also be registered from the other side,” Surendra Singh said. “Action should be taken against both sides as per their role.”
Surendra Singh said six people from Dhirendra Pratap Singh’s group were injured in the fight and one of them was hospitalised. He claimed they were all being ignored.