Lucknow: On Friday, a video of an alleged Bharatiya Janata Party leader abusing a woman and shoving her around did the rounds of social media, leading to a First Information Report.
Shrikant Tyagi’s Twitter handle says he’s a national executive member of the Bharatiya Janata Party’s Kisan Morcha (farmer wing).
The video pertains to an incident at Grand Omaxe Society in Noida’s Sector 93-A Friday. It shows Tyagi allegedly arguing with a woman over some palm trees that he had planted in the common area of the society. When the woman objects to it, he’s heard calling her names and then threatening her (chali jaye ilaaj karke yahan se, he’s heard saying the society’s maintenance staff)
“You think you can uproot the trees bringing two-penny guards with you? This is my premises,” Tyagi’s heard saying in Hindi. “You won’t be able to do a thing,” he’s allegedly heard saying, before shoving the woman.
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Tyagi’s been booked under Section 354 (assaulting a woman with intent to outrage her modesty) of the Indian Penal Code. Police later added Sections 323 (voluntarily causing hurt), 504 (Intentional insult with intent to provoke breach of the peace), 447 (criminal trespass), and 506 (punishment for criminal intimidation) to the FIR.
Noida Police Commissioner Alok Singh told ThePrint that they had seized three vehicles belonging to Tyagi and had set up teams to look for him.
Four people associated with him have been detained, Deputy Commissioner of Police (Central Noida) Rajesh S. said, adding that Tyagi had taken the help of relatives to escape.
“We are scanning CCTV footage and teams are looking for him,” he said.
ThePrint made several attempts to call Tyagi and sent him messages and email but his phone remained switched off. This story will be updated if and when he responds.
The Bharatiya Janta Party distanced itself from Tyagi. Speaking to ThePrint, BJP state spokesperson Rakesh Tripathi quoted BJP’s state Kisaan Morcha Rajkumar Chahar as saying that the organisation did not have any member by the name of Shrikant Tyagi.
“The BJP feels that action should be taken against the man due to the kind of video which has come to fore,” Tripathi added.
But Tyagi’s social media accounts show photos of him with BJP leaders such as national president J.P. Nadda, Uttar Pradesh’s Deputy Chief Minister Keshav Prasad Maurya, and cabinet ministers Swatantra Dev Singh, and Arvind Sharma.
Swati Agrawal, the woman in the now-viral video, told ThePrint that she and a few female residents of the housing society went to Tyagi, who has a flat in one of the tower buildings, to object to his illegally planting trees in the common area of the society and encroaching upon common land.
“This man had previously planted trees, now he was planting small plants. When I asked him to remove them, he refused to listen. When I went to pull them out, he threatened to ‘touch me’ if I touched the plants,” she said. “I was trying to be respectful but he used foul language not just at me but also against my husband and children.”
In 2019 too, residents accused Tyagi of building on the common drain, illegally constructing a wall between his house and the one next door, and illegally covering up some of the common areas to make a courtyard for his house, among other things.
“Whenever he enters the society, he brings with him several bouncers in two jeeps, and at times, even police personnel in uniform,” Agarwal told ThePrint. “He threatens the security guards too. All residents are civil and they don’t want to get into arguments with him.”
In October 2019, a video showed personal security officers of Shrikant Tyagi allegedly abusing a group of society members and asking someone to “bring a spade to show them.”
Soon after that, B.N. Singh, then the district magistrate of Gautam Buddha Nagar — under which the society comes — asked for a report from the local intelligence unit (LIU) and the city magistrate about whether the security cover provided to Tyagi was misused. The official also asked the Ghaziabad district magistrate to consider doing away with the security provided to him by the Ghaziabad Police.
Singh had also written to the Noida Authority asking for action against Tyagi if the allegations were proved correct.
Two months later, the Noida Authority issued a final notice to Tyagi giving him seven days to fix the irregularities or face demolition. No action has been taken against him since.
Speaking to ThePrint, P.V.S Prakash, a resident and former president of the Grand Omaxe AOA, told ThePrint that Tyagi’s behaviour had led to fear among residents. BJP Member of Parliament Mahesh Sharma is scheduled to visit the society Saturday in connection with the incident, he said.
“In 2019 too, when residents complained against Tyagi, he [Sharma] had visited the society and promised action. They know about the encroachment,” Prakash said. “Notice Authority had sent a notice and sent a person to the site who had identified a lot of illegalities and sent a notice but no action was taken.”
(Edited by Uttara Ramaswamy)
Source: The Print