The Chief Executive Officer of a Janpad Panchayat in the Rewa district of Madhya Pradesh was allegedly attacked by some gunmen. The attack took place a few hours after he had a heated telephone conversation with local BJP MLA, KP Tripathi. Mishra, who was injured and in hospital, told reporters he was threatened by the MLA.
“The MLA pressured me for a year to get the job done according to his wishes, including rehabilitating a transferred panchayat secretary, Sandeep Dwivedi. I had clearly told him on the phone on Tuesday that he had to transfer me, but he told me me that he wouldn’t waste energy transferring me, but would do something more. Only a few hours after the phone call, the attack on me happened,” he told reporters.
The audio clip of the alleged conversation was widely distributed before the attack, which took place on Tuesday evening. The clip shows how a man, supposedly the MLA, threatens someone because of some hanging works and abuses him.
Mr Tripathi, who represents the Semariya constituency, has dismissed the charges, alleging a political conspiracy to tarnish his image, the Press Trust of India news agency reported.
Mr Mishra said the attack was carried out by about 20 gunmen, including a local BJP leader believed to have been close to Mr Tripathi.
“I was returning from an official job in the car driven by my driver when 18-20 men armed with lathes blocked the car and parked their vehicles in front of it,” Mr Mishra said. “When the doors of the car were locked from the inside, they broke the windows and pulled me out. Then they attacked me indiscriminately and left the place,” he added.
The 58-year-old said he has identified three of the attackers – “the BJP’s Bankuiyan Mandal president Manish Shukla and two others, Vinay Shukla and Vivek Gautam”.
District collector Manoj Pushp said Mr Mishra is currently being treated at Sanjay Gandhi Hospital.
Anil Sonkar, a senior officer of the Rewa Police Department, said a case has been filed under various sections against 18-20 individuals, including the three named suspects. “An investigation is underway into the other allegations made by the CEO of Janpad Panchayat. No arrests have been made so far,” he added.
The chairman of the media cell of the Madhya Pradesh Congress Committee, KK Mishra, claimed that the BJP legislator was involved in the incident. “It is clear who attacked the panchayat department official, as the incident occurred after the audio clip of his argument with the BJP legislature surfaced. Everything is clear,” he was quoted as saying by PTI.
District BJP President Ajay Singh said the allegations against the lawmaker are unfounded and action against the BJP leaders, whose names appear in the case, will be taken after verification of the facts, PTI reported.