Ballia firing: UP BJP issues show-cause notice to MLA for backing accused

The Uttar Pradesh unit of the BJP has issued a show-cause notice to its MLA Surendra Singh for making statements in support of Dhirendra Pratap Singh, a local party leader who has been arrested for allegedly murdering a man.

Surendra Singh, the MLA from Bairia, has been given a week's time to respond to the notice and asked not to make unnecessary statements, state BJP chief Swatantra Dev Singh told PTI on Tuesday.

Surendra Singh has come out in support of Dhirendra Pratap Singh, who allegedly shot dead a 46-year-old man in Ballia district's Durjanpur village following a quarrel over the allotment of ration shops on October 15.

The Bairia MLA has said Dhirendra Pratap Singh "opened fire in self-defence" as "it was a do-or-die situation for him". He has also accused the administration of bias and demanded that action be taken against the other side.

Swatantra Dev Singh said Surendra Singh has been asked to let the law take its course.

"Yes, a notice has been issued to Surendra Singh, and he has been asked to refrain from making unnecessary statements. He has been given a week's time to explain his stand," the state BJP chief said.

Asked when the notice was issued to Surendra Singh, Swatantra Dev initially said it was issued on Monday. However, later he said the notice was issued on Sunday.

He also said BJP national president J P Nadda had sought information on the matter on phone.

Speaking to reporters on Monday, Surendra Singh had said he was standing with justice.

He said while the person who fired bullets has been arrested, action should also be taken against those who wielded sticks and pelted stones.

"A case should also be registered from the other side (Dhirendra Pratap Singh). Action should be taken against both sides as per their role," he said.

Surendra Singh has also sought a CB-CID probe in the case.

Earlier, he had told reporters, "Dhirendra Pratap Singh opened fire in self-defence or else dozens of his family and associates would have been killed... He had no other option. It was a do-or-die situation fro him."

He claimed six people from Dhirendra Pratap Singh's group were injured in the incident and one of them was hospitalised in Varanasi but nobody was listening to them.

So far, police have arrested 10 people in the Ballia firing case, including Dhirendra Pratap Singh.

An FIR has been lodged against around 30 people, most of whom are yet to be identified.

(Only the headline and picture of this report may have been reworked by the Business Standard staff; the rest of the content is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

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