Aligarh (UP), Dec 13: Unpleasant scenes marred the swearing-in of newly-elected members of the Aligarh Municipal Corporation after BJP corporators created a ruckus when the lone BSP corporator, Musharraf Husain, insisted on taking the oath in Urdu, says a PTI report.
Husain was roughed up by the BJP rowdies. Some district officials intervened and managed to defuse the tension, before the situation could get worse.
Husain later told newspersons there was a conspiracy to kill him, and had the officials not intervened he might have had to pay with his life.
Some miscreants also threw brickbats at Aligarh’s new mayor Mohd Furqan’s car but he escaped unhurt.
Furqan today expressed his “sense of distress” at the unsavoury incidents.
“I do not think it is proper to derail the development agenda of the government by throwing up unnecessary controversies based on language, caste and religion,” he told PTI.
“I can understand the BJP workers’ anger on losing a seat, which they have held for the past 20 years, and I was apprehending some trouble at the oath-taking ceremony. I had therefore asked all the BSP members to take oath in Hindi and avoid controversy. However, despite my advice, one of our corporators chose to take oath in Urdu. This, however, was his constitutional right and if he did so, there was no reason to whip up emotions, he said.
He also said that the Narendra Modi government at the Centre and the Yogi Adityanath government in the state have come to power on the plank of development. “I can assure them that I will fully cooperate to make a success of all their attempts in making Aligarh a Smart City.”
Regarding the allegation made by some BJP members that BSP members did not show respect to ‘Vande Matram’, Furqan said: “The entire proceedings have been videographed and barring perhaps two or three persons, the entire hall which was occupied mostly by BSP members, paid full respect on this occasion.”
When contacted, Aligarh District Magistrate Hrishikesh Bhaskar Yashod told PTI, “I would not like to comment on the incident at this stage because so far no group or individual has filed any report with the police. However, the controversy over singing of ‘Vande Matram’ does not have substance because 99 per cent of the audience was on its feet when the song was being sung.”
He said the mayor is fully empowered to take cognisance of whatever took place and the situation does not entail any justification for the district authorities and the police to intervene at this stage.
Meanwhile, some BJP members have demanded that a case of ‘treason’ be filed against the BSP member for showing ‘disrespect’ to Hindi language.