‘Assault’ visuals land Cong. leader in a spot


Police weighing action against Saratchandra Prasad

Congress leader Saratchandra Prasad found himself in a spot after a security camera footage of him allegedly assaulting the owner of a signage agency went viral on social media on Thursday. The Kerala Police are weighing whether they can take cognisance of the incident in the absence of a specific complaint.

The incident, which drew widespread criticism, has not augured well for the public image of the Congress party. It has also, arguably, dimmed Mr. Prasad’s chances of getting a party ticket to contest the upcoming Lok Sabha elections.

The video recording was aired widely on television news channels on Friday. It showed Mr. Prasad lashing out at the owner of the establishment, throwing a chair and creating havoc in the shop.

Suresh, owner of the agency, told reporters that Mr. Prasad owed him over ₹1 lakh for making political hoardings and banners. He said Mr. Prasad placed a new order through an aide. Suresh insisted that Mr. Prasad settle his debt first. His stance incensed Mr. Prasad who allegedly assaulted him. Mr. Suresh said he was a Congress supporter and hence did not prefer a police complaint against Mr. Prasad.

He said he had given a complaint against Mr. Prasad to Kerala Pradesh Congress Committee (KPCC) president Mullappally Ramachandran. A senior officer said the police were legally empowered to take legal notice of the incident and register a case against Mr. Prasad since the crime has emerged strongly in the public domain. The police were yet to take a final decision in the matter.

Mr. Prasad told reporters that he had not assaulted Mr. Suresh. He said the shopowner had raised his hand and verbally abused him. Mr. Prasad said he said he had only asked the man to lower his hand and stop spewing abuses. Mr. Prasad said the visuals aired on news media were false.

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Printable version | Jan 28, 2020 10:00:19 AM |

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