Not aware if PM spoke on Akash Vijayvargiya case: BJP leader

Prime Minister Narendra Modi

Indore, July 23: The convenor of Madhya Pradesh BJPs disciplinary committee Monday said he has no official information that Prime Minister Narendra Modi had directly commented on the conduct of BJP MLA Akash Vijayvargiya who was caught on camera hitting a civic officer with a cricket bat.

Committee convenor Babusingh Raghuwanshi also said he had no information regarding the BJP issuing any notice to Akash Vijayvargiya over the incident.

Virtually defending Akash Vijayvargiya, Raghuwanshi said the lawmaker is innocent till he is proved guilty by a court of law.

Akash Vijayvargiya, the son of senior BJP leader Kailash Vijayvargiya, had allegedly assaulted the officer, an Indore Municipal Corporation (IMC) building inspector, with a bat during a drive to demolish a dilapidated house on June 26.

The 34-year-old first-time legislator from Indore-3 was arrested and released on bail by a court four days later.

Days after the incident, the prime minister, speaking at a meeting of the BJPs Parliamentary Board in Delhi, had reportedly said arrogance and misbehaviour cannot be tolerated.

According to sources, Modi had said in the July 2 meeting that "Arrogance and misbehaviour will not be tolerated irrespective of whoever it may be, whoever's son he may be.

The remarks were seen as a rebuke to Akash Vijayvargiya.

Asked about the episode and suspense over disciplinary action against the MLA, Raghuwanshi said, "I dont have information about what the Prime Minister had actually said in the BJPs Parliamentary Board meeting.

"Therefore, I cannot comment on it. Moreover, no official release was issued by the party on Modi's statement on the issue nor any audio-video clip had come out of that comment.

The convenor of the three-member disciplinary panel said, "It is not clear to me whether the prime minister had stated directly about Akash or it was a general missive to all the leaders on their public conduct.

"I just don't have any information regarding the BJP issuing any notice to Akash, he said when asked if the MLA will face action for his misconduct.

The senior BJP leader said at present no matter has come before the disciplinary committee regarding the cricket bat case involving Akash Vijayvargiya.

"I am also a lawyer. According to jurisprudence, he is innocent in the eyes of law till charges against him are proved in a court of law," Raghuwanshi said.

Asked about senior Congress leader Digvijay Singh speaking about delay in disciplinary action against the MLA, Raghuwanshi hit back at the former chief minister.

"The BJP knows very well how to keep the party's image good and if anything goes wrong then also how to repair it. But we don't need sermons from those who had issued statements in favour of terrorists, he said.

Meanwhile, when PTI contacted Akash Vijayvargiya in the assembly is Bhopal, where the monsoon session is currently on, he declined to comment on the matter.


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