A three-year-old hoisted the flag at Mussoorie’s Gandhi Chowk on Thursday even as two leadersfought over who among them should hoist the flag during Independence Day celebrations.

Mussoorie Municipal Council president Manmohan Singh Mall of the Congress clasped the fist of Mussoorie MLA Ganesh Joshi of the BJP and as the latter approached the post to unfurl the flag. A war of words ensued, followed by a fist fight even as the locals tried to stop it.

To resolve the issue, the locals asked a three-year-old attending the ceremony made to hoist the flag, said Ganesh Rayal who was among the gathering. The blame game continued even after the ceremony was over with the two accusing each other of hooliganism.

“Let the Mussoorie residents decide who the hooligan is. Whatever happened was very shameful,” Mr. Joshi said as Mr. Mall retorted: “It was already decided that this year [unlike the previous years] the Mussoorie Nagar Palika chairman would hoist the flag. The BJP MLA portrayed hooliganism.”

However, Mussoorie Sub-Divisional Magistrate N.S. Dangi said: “Like the previous years, it was decided that this year too the Mussoorie MLA would hoist the flag at the Gandhi Chowk. It seems that the fight was because the two leaders were from different political parties.”