NSA slapped on Varun to stop him from campaigning, alleges BJP


Lucknow : The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) Thursday accused Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Mayawati of slapping the stringent National Security Act (NSA) on the party’s Pilibhit candidate Varun Gandhi with the aim of keeping him away from campaigning for the elections.

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“The UP government is trying its best so that Varun stays away from the election campaigns. With such an objective, he (Varun) has been booked under NSA by the state government,” senior BJP leader M. Venkaiah Naidu told reporters in Etah.

Naidu along with party seniors, including state election-in-charge Kalraj Mishra and BJP state president Ramapati Ram Tripathi, met Varun Gandhi in Etah jail for about 45 minutes, party officials said.

“As the state government is aware that the cases against Varun are weak and he would easily get out on bail, it slapped the NSA on him so that he remains in jail for a longer time and is not able to participate in the party’s election campaigns,” Naidu charged.

Meanwhile, activists of the BJP and Vishwa Hindu Parishad (VHP) demonstrated in Etah district demanding the immediate release of Varun Gandhi.

“The BJP and VHP workers forced closure of several shops in the district to register their protest,” police inspector Nawaab Singh told IANS on telephone.

The BJP and VHP workers held a series of demonstrations in the city. However, no violence was reported from any area, the police official said.

Varun Gandhi, who has been in the eye of a storm over his alleged inflammatory speeches targetting Muslims, was booked under the NSA by the state government for inciting violence before his arrest on Saturday.