New Delhi: Twenty-five people, including eight policemen, were injured on Thursday as angry supporters of former Union minister Ajit Singh clashed with the police in Ghaziabad over the Centre’s move to evict him from his Lutzens’ Zone residence.
The RLD leader, in a U-turn, demanded that the house where he lived be converted into a memorial for his father, former PM Charan Singh.
The Ghaziabad police used water cannons and rubber bullets to disperse protesters as they blocked traffic on NH-58 and tried to disrupt Delhi’s water supply.
Around 200 RLD and BKU workers were detained after they threw stones at the police. They were protesting against the cut in water and power supply to a Tughlak Road bungalow where Ajit Singh lives, demanding it be made a Chaudhary Charan Singh Memorial, like similar ones for Indira Gandhi, Shashtri and Jagjivan Ram.
IGP (Meerut range) Alok Sharma claimed the BKU and RLD men had “pre-planned the violence”.
The former minister said he had told the government he would vacate the bungalow by September 24, but that ?farmers? wanted it to become a Charan Singh memorial as he had stayed there for 36 years.
The police claimed that the former minister’s supporters had pre-planned the violence.
“They (supporters) had given a call to cut water supply to Delhi and for that 10,000 supporters of BKU and RLD had assembled at the regulator at Muradnagar. It was a volatile situation because the crowd had come out with stones and bottles,” IG Meerut Alok Sharma said.
Mr Singh had been staying in the bungalow, where his father Chaudhary Charan Singh resided during his tenure as prime minister and finance minister.
The government had, last week, snapped the power and water supplies to official residences of Mr Singh and other ex-MPs, as they were not eligible for the facility and were overstaying.
Mr Singh had said that he would vacate the residence and had sought some time to the move to a new accommodation.
The leader on Thursday, said that he would vacate his government bungalow by next week but claimed people want the house to be converted into a memorial for Charan Singh as he stayed there for 36 years.
Criticising the BJP for lack of “courtesy” of saying though he cannot stay in the residence after ceasing to be a minister or a lawmaker, Mr Singh said that he should have been given time to vacate after he informed the government of his plans to leave the bungalow by September 24....