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Congressmen cry foul as UP govt raids petrol pumps

October 23, 2006 20:56 IST

Congressmen on Monday charged Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Mulayam Singh Yadav of harassing a party leader who made a complaint against actress-turned politician Jaya Bachchan.

Led by party legislator Siraj Mehndi, a delegation of Congressmen called on state Governor T V Rajeshwar seeking his intervention to restrain the Mulayam Singh Yadav government from harassing Congress leader Amir Haider whose petrol pumps were raided by officials of the weights and measures department last week.

In his petition, Haider has alleged that he had been at the receiving end ever since he made a complaint alleging concealment of facts by Jaya Bachchan while filing her nomination for membership to the Rajya Sabha from Uttar Pradesh, recently.

"While we were preparing for the 'namaz' (prayers) on the last Friday of Ramzan, suddenly two jeep-loads of officials belonging to the weights and measures and the vigilance department raided my petrol pump, accusing us of committing major discrepancies," Haider told

"However, even after two hours of search and seizure of our documents they could not detect anything wrong; so the next thing was the arrival of land revenue officials who sought to find something wrong with the measurement of the plot of land on which the petrol pump is situated," he said.

"When they failed to find any fault, they left after issuing threats that they will soon put me in the dock on some other pretext," he added.

Haider claimed: "All this was being done only to intimidate me so that I withdraw my complaint against Jaya Bachchan, who had made a false declaration about the property owned by her and her husband in UP."

He said, "Bachchan had concealed the fact that her husband Amitabh Bachchan owned a large chunk of agricultural land in Barabanki district, barely 32 km from Lucknow."

It was another matter that acting on yet another complaint, the Lucknow bench of the Allahabad High Court had issued notice to the state government for having allotted prime agricultural land to Amitabh in violation of all rules and norms that prescribe allotment of such lands only to landless Dalits or other below poverty line people.
Sharat Pradhan in Lucknow