The controversy surrounding the arrest of Mysuru MP Pratap Simha took a fresh twist after a video clip surfaced on Monday, which showed Simha speaking about BJP National President Amit Shah asking the party’s Yuva Morcha in Karnataka to hold aggressive protests.
In the 37-second video clip that is being shared on WhatsApp and social media platforms, Simha discloses that he and other Yuva Morcha members had a discussion with Amit Shah where the veteran BJP leader asked whether the Yuva Morcha had held protests in the state.
When the Yuva Morcha members described the protests they had held, Shah reportedly urged them to hold more aggressive protests, by asking them whether any protest led to “bursting of teargas and lathi-charges."
Simha responded by saying that there had been no such protests in the state, to which Shah reportedly urged the Yuva Morcha members to up the ante. The video ends with Simha reassuring people that he would abide by these instructions
The clip appears to be part of a longer Facebook Live video published by Simha. When Simha was asked about the video clip at a press conference in Mysuru on Monday, the MP dismissed it as a ‘cut-and-paste’ job, reported The Hindu.
The video went viral following the controversial arrest of Simha before Hanuman Jayanti celebrations in Hunsuru. The police resorted to a lathi-charge after people gathered to celebrate the festival agitated against the arrest of BJP MP Pratap Simha. The MP had been taken into preventive custody when he was on his way to attend the festival celebrations, but was released on Sunday night.
Reacting to the video, state BJP president BS Yeddyurappa said that Simha had misunderstood the directions issued by Shah. "It seems that Pratap Simha has misunderstood the instructions of Shah. He (Shah) has only directed party members to take up public issues strongly and stage protests," Yeddyurappa said, speaking to The New Indian Express.
The video clip also drew sharp reactions from Congress party members with Chief Minister Siddaramaiah taking to Twitter to vent his ire at Simha.
Taking BJP Prez @AmitShah’s advice seriously,Mysuru MP @mepratap is trying to create communal disturbance in Hunsur during Hanuman Jayanthi.— Siddaramaiah (@siddaramaiah) December 4, 2017
It is our resp to ensure citizens celebrate festivals peacefully. No person,including an MP, will be allowed to take law in his own hands.