Rashtriya Lok Dal president Jayant Chaudhary was detained in Bareilly airport along with other party leaders as they came out of the terminal building to head to Lakhimpur Kheri to attend the ‘antim ardas’ in the memory of deceased farmers and a journalist on Tuesday.
In a statement issued on Tuesday, RLD UP unit spokesman Surendra Trivedi said that Jayant Chaudhary along with other RLD leaders were arrested from Bareilly airport soon after they landed there and were about to head to Tikunia in Lakhimpur to attend the ‘antim ardas’.
As the news spread, a large number of RLD leaders and workers assembled at the Bareilly airport and raised slogans against the Bharatiya Janata Party government and demanded the release of their leaders.
The RLD spokesman said that party workers and leaders in other districts of UP also staged demonstrations in protest against the arrest of their national president. He claimed that the RLD protests forced the government to go on the back foot and release Jayant Chaudhary and other leaders to go to Lakhimpur Kheri.
On the other hand, national convener of Team RLD, Anupam Mishra, RLD state president Dr Masood, RLD state farmers cell chief Ganga Singh Senthwar and Sitapur district chief RP Chauhan were stopped on their way to Sitapur and detained at a guest house. The leaders were later let off and they too headed to Lakhimpur.
In a statement issued later in the day, Jayant Chaudhary said that the Lakhimpur incident would never fade in his memory. “We have taken a pledge to fight lifelong for the protection of the interest of the farmers. It is unfortunate that the so-called double engine government did not talk to the farmers as yet. I firmly believe that the sacrifice of the farmers will not be wasted and the BJP will face a crushing defeat. Stopping someone from attending ‘antim ardas’ is an infringement of democratic rights” he said.