BJP MLA, who assaulted Shaktiman, sent to 14-day judicial custody


Dehradun: Following the furore over police horse, Shaktiman, being allegedly assaulted by the Bharatiya Janata Party leader Ganesh Joshi from Mussoorie, the latter was arrested on Friday morning. Joshi has been sent to judicial custody for 14 days.

Sanjay Gunjyal, Inspector General of Garhwal range, said that the MLA from Mussoorie was picked up from outside a hotel in Patel Nagar area on the basis of an FIR lodged against him and his associates at Nehru Colony police station here in connection with the assault on the police horse on March 14.

The official said Joshi was being interrogated. He, however, refused to disclose where the MLA has been taken.

The Dehradun Police on Sunday had registered a case against Ganesh Joshi for beating a police horse, reportedly breaking one of its legs, during a protest against Uttarakhand Chief Minister Harish Rawat on Monday for “misuse” of funds.

Reacting sharply to the development, BJP lodged a protest with Governor K K Paul and alleged it was “abduction” of its MLA. “The manner in which Joshi was picked up from outside a hotel suggests he was abducted. Those who picked him up were in plain clothes and it is not clear whether they were police personnel or goondas,” Leader of Opposition in Uttarakhand Assembly Ajay Bhatt said.

Bhatt said he had called on Governor K K Paul to register his protest against the manner in which the party legislator was picked up.

Meanwhile, it took two hours on Thursday night for doctors to get Shaktiman’s injured leg amputated, which according to them was successful.

The horse’s amputation surgery took place two days after his fractures were fixed by a group of 10 doctors — six from Pantnagar and four district veterinary officers.

Stating that Shaktiman will take a month to recover from the surgery, Uttarakhand DGP BS Sidhu said that in the meantime he will be given temporary prosthetic aid in the form of artificial legs which will be tailor made to his specifications.

The action against Joshi comes a day after the arrest of another party worker Pramod Bora from Haldwani in Nainital district on Thursday. Dehradun SSP Sadanand Date said Bora along with Joshi was responsible for precipitating the fall of the horse during the protest March on March 14 which caused grievous injuries to one of its hind legs.

The BJP has been demanding withdrawal of cases lodged against its workers including Joshi, asserting that they were being framed at the behest of the state government to cow down the opposition.