Vadodara BJP corporator ‘fails’ to prevent demolition of slum, tied to tree, thrashed

Vadodara: Angry residents of a municipal ward in Vadodara, on October 3, tied a Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) corporator to a tree and beat him up for “failing” to prevent demolition of their slum in May by the Vadodara Municipal Corporation (VMC).
In a video of the incident that went viral, the corporator, with his clothes torn, was seen tied to a tree in Bapod area and pleading to the people gathered around him that he had no knowledge about the civic body’s decision to raze the slum.
“This land belongs to the Collector (state government) and he is the one who passes an order. I am a small councilor. I have no idea about the decision taken by the municipal commissioner (regarding demolition),” the corporator, identified as Hasmukh Patel, was heard saying in Gujarati.
Patel represents Bapod (Ward number 5).
The corporator was later rescued by a team of police officers that rushed to the area and took him to a nearby hospital for treatment.
Police have confirmed that Patel was thrashed.
City Police Commissioner Manoj Sashidhar said 66 people were arrested in connection with the case and further investigation is on.
“When Hasmukh Patel was taking a round of his ward, around 20 people protested against him over a demolition carried out some months ago. They took him to a nearby area and tied him to a tree and beat him up,” Sashidhar said.
The residents of the slum that was located around Nani Bapod lake under ward number 5 were given alternative houses under a government rehabilitation program, the commissioner said, adding that the attack was not pre-planned.

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