Assam Police arrests Gujarat MLA Jignesh Mevani: Details here
Gujarat MLA and Dalit leader Jignesh Mevani was arrested by the Assam Police from the Palanpur Circuit House in Gujarat on Wednesday night. He was reportedly arrested over his now-removed tweets on PM Narendra Modi after a BJP leader from Assam filed a complaint against him. Mevani was taken to Ahmedabad last night and later flown to Assam on Thursday morning. Here's more.
Why does this story matter?
Mevani is a prominent Dalit leader from Gujarat and is known for his vocal criticism of the ruling BJP and PM Modi. Along with Hardik Patel and Alpesh Thakore, he first emerged as a youth face, challenging the BJP's dominance in Gujarat, during the 2017 Assembly elections. His arrest has sparked sharp reactions on social media platforms such as Twitter.
Mevani arrested for offenses related to promoting enmity between communities
A BJP leader from Kokrajhar in Assam, named Arup Kumar Dey, had filed a complaint against Mevani over his tweet posted a few days ago. According to reports, the First Information Report (FIR) listed offenses related to promoting enmity between communities, among others. However, Mevani's aide Suresh Jat told PTI that his tweet has been withheld by Twitter, adding, "It was about Nathuram Godse."
Congress condemns arrest; protests at airport
Gujarat Pradesh Congress Committee chief Jagdish Thakor condemned the way Mevani was "treated." Many Congress leaders led by Thakor also held a protest against Mevani's arrest at the Ahmedabad airport—from where Mevani was taken to Guwahati. "The BJP government is intimidating when the youth raise the voice of the people against the BJP government. But we will not be afraid to fight," Thakor said.
Actor Swara Bhasker also tweeted in Mevani's support
Who is Jignesh Mevani?
Mevani is a Member of the Legislative Assembly from Gujarat's Vadgam. He is an independent MLA, but has recently extended support to the Congress. He is a lawyer activist and former journalist. Mevani rose to national prominence during the 2016 Una protests, which was triggered after seven members of a Dalit family were assaulted by a group on the pretext of cow protection.