Private taxi drivers on Friday blocked the LudhianaFerozepur road at Bhai Bala Chowk for over an hour, following an alleged road rage incident, in which a taxi driver was thrashed by a commuter.
Due to the protest, the flow of traffic on the Ferozepur road was badly hit.
To control the protesters, the police resorted to lathicharge and also arrested 13 taxi drivers and lodged a case for blocking road and various sections of National Highway act.
Inspector Beant Juneja, SHO at police division number 5, who has an additional charge of police division number 8, said that a taxi driver who works with Uber taxi service, was crossing from Bhai Bala Chowk when a Swift car hit his taxi from the back.
The occupant of the car, identified as Harminder Singh of Lehra, entered into a scuffle with the taxi driver and thrashed him. In the incident, the driver’s turban was tossed.
Meanwhile, Gurpinder Singh called his fellow taxi drivers. Seeing taxi drivers gathering at the spot Harminder Singh fled from the scene.
The SHO added that after the incident, the taxi drivers staged a protest and blocked the Ludhiana-Ferozepur road. The police tried to pacify the protestors and asked them to file a complaint against the accused, he said.
“The taxi drivers were reluctant to bring the accused on the spot. The senior officers also tried pacifying the protestors, but to no avail,” said the SHO.
Protestors were demanding to arrest the car occupant who thrashed one of the taxi drivers.
The SHO, however, denied the cane charging incident. He said the police used mild force to disperse the protestors, as the traffic was disturbed.
The division number 8 police have registered a case under Section 295A (hurting religious sentiments) and 323 (voluntarily causing hurt) against Harminder Singh of Lehra village, following the complaint of Gurpinder Singh.
The police also booked Gurpinder and others under Section 283 (danger or obstruction in public way or line of navigation), 188 (disobedience to order duly promulgated by public servant) of the IPC and various sections of the National Highway act..