Congress president Sonia Gandhi’s son-in-law Robert Vadra got into a spat with Uttarakhand BJP MLA Ganesh Joshi at the Dehradun airport on Sunday after he refused to accept a bouquet from the lawmaker accused of assaulting police horse Shaktiman in March.
Vadra refused to accept Joshi’s bouquet alleging that he was responsible for breaking Shaktiman limb that eventually led to its death in April.
Joshi and BJP workers were at the airport to receive the party’s parliamentarians, including Meenakshi Lekhi. Joshi’s supporters said when the MLA was told about Vadra’s presence in the airport, he reached out to him with a bouquet.
The MLA’s supporters said when security personnel informed Vadra about Joshi, he immediately retorted, saying he “will not accept a bouquet from the person, who broke the limb of Shaktiman”.
“Shaktiman was a horse and could not speak. But I am Robert Vadra,” a BJP worker present at the airport quoted Vadra as telling Joshi. Speaking to the media after the incident, Vadra said: “I told him what I thought of him. He came towards me screaming, shouting and threatening. I told him the horse could not speak but I can.”
Meenakshi Lekhi, a BJP MP from Delhi said the altercation happened as “Vadra tried to abuse the BJP leader, provoking the party workers to shout slogans against him”.
Joshi refused to speak to the media on the incident.
Shaktiman died in April, almost a month after losing a hind leg from a brutal beating, allegedly at the hands of Joshi during a protest. The incident had triggered widespread outrage.