Mhow (MP), Aug 25: After a ruling BJP MLA and his supporters allegedly ransacked a tool booth following an altercation with the workers manning it when they were asked to pay the toll fee in Indore district, now the BJP lawmaker has asked why should he apologise.
Why should I apologize," asked the BJP leader, insisting that he was attacked first in an NDTV report. "I'm an MLA, we don't pay toll," he said. The police has accepted his complaint against the workers of the toll plaza.
Police said five employees of the toll booth on Lebad-Manpur road were booked on the basis a complaint made by the MLA. The incident took place last evening when the workers at the toll booth under Manpur police station limits refused to let Thakur's vehicle pass through without paying the tax, they said.
"An altercation took place between the two sides, in which the MLA was allegedly manhandled," Manpur police station inspector Kamlesh Sharma said. Public representatives, including MLAs among others, are exempted from paying the toll tax, he said. TV footage showed the MLA hurling a stone at the toll plaza and one of his supporters hitting its glass panes with an iron rod.
However, Toll Booth Manager Ujjwal Pithode said the MLA and his supporters allegedly ransacked the toll booth when they were asked to pay the tax applicable to the vehicles passing from the area. "When the MLA, along with his driver and another person reached the toll booth, the employees posted there asked him to pay toll without realising that the person sitting in the vehicle was an MLA," Pithode said.
"Instead of introducing himself, the MLA started abusing the toll booth staff and telephoned his supporters who gathered at the spot soon," he added. He alleged that later, supporters of the MLA ransacked the toll booth and broke its glass panes, he said adding that despite several attempts, police have not yet registered their complaint.
According to police, the MLA, along with his supporters, filed a complaint against the toll booth staff. A case under IPC sections 294 (obscene act or words) and 323 (causing hurt) and relevant sections of Scheduled Caste and Scheduled Tribe (Prevention of Atrocities) Act 1989 has been registered against five persons by Manipur police, Sharma said.
Three accused have been identified as C P Upadhyay, Santosh Dixit and Chetan. However, alleging that a "false complaint" has been lodged in this regard, Pithode claimed that Upadhyay and Dixit were not even present at the spot.
This is for the second time that employees of the toll booth in Manpur have been booked following complaint by a legislator. Prior to this, Congress MLA from Dhar district Honey Singh Baghel, also a tribal legislator, had lodged a police case against this toll booth's employees when they allegedly misbehaved with him in 2014.
(With inputs from agencies)