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Man offers namaz on road outside UP CM’s secretariat, sends cops into a tizzy

The man who was later identified as Rafiq Ahmed, a local cleric was eventually arrested at midnight.

india Updated: Oct 13, 2018 09:46 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times, Lucknow
namaz,namaz on road,Yogi Adityanath
A cleric in Lucknow triggered a traffic jam outside the chief minister’s secretariat Friday evening after began offering namaz on the road.(HT PHOTO)

A middle-aged man created a flutter outside the Uttar Pradesh chief minister’s secretariat Friday evening by offering namaz in the middle of the road with a knife tucked in his waist, triggering a traffic jam and raising slogans against Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

Chief minister Yogi Adityanath was presiding over a meeting of senior officials inside the building when the incident took place.

The man who was later identified as Rafiq Ahmed, a local cleric was eventually arrested at midnight after Lucknow’s senior superintendent of police Kalanidhi Naithani read the riot act to his force and ordered the registration of an FIR after the man had left the place.

“He was tracked and arrested for creating nuisance and blocking a road. Further investigations are on,” Naithani said.

Taking serious note of the incident, the Lucknow police chief also suspended two constables present at the spot for negligence and for allowing the man to offer namaz in middle of the road.

Traffic movement on the busy road outside the CM’s secretariat came to a standstill for around 20 minutes when the man was offering namaz. During this period, security personnel of the CM’s secretariat as well as other police personnel including traffic cops remained mute spectators. The entire incident was recorded by television crews.

The CM’s secretariat is a high-security building and a large contingent of police force is always deployed there. After offering namaz, Ahmed, who could not be identified at that time, left the scene on his two-wheeler.

“The police personnel deployed at the CM’s secretariat said that the person started offering namaz, so they did not take any action or tried to forcibly remove him from the busy road,” said Hazratganj circle officer Abhay Mishra. He said that the security around the secretariat has been tightened so that such incidents are not repeated.

First Published: Oct 13, 2018 09:09 IST