Lucknow, March 13: Senior Congress leaders Priyanka Gandhi and Jyotiraditya Scindia met Dalit activist Chandrashekhar Azad, currently admitted at Meerut's Anand Hospital. Azad, who heads the socio-political group Bhim Army, was hospitalised shortly after being taken into custody by the Uttar Pradesh police on Tuesday.
Azad, along with dozens of his supporters, was detained for allegedly violating the Model Code of Conduct. The group was accused of violating the norms laid down by the Election Commission while taking out a bike rally in Meerut. The Bhim Army rally reportedly used more number of bikes than sanctioned by the polling body for such campaign events. Chandrashekhar Azad, Chief of Bhim Army, Drops 'Ravan' From His Name, Says 'I May Call Myself Chulbul Pandey'
Priyanka and Scindia's meeting with Azad assumed significance ahead of the upcoming Lok Sabha elections 2019. The Bhim Army, which has gained traction among the Dalit youths in western UP, is considering to field candidates in the general elections.
The Congress, which has been sidelined from the alliance formed by Samajwadi Party, Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) and Rashtriya Lok Dal (RLD), is seeking support from smaller parties across the state. "We are ready for talks with all secular parties," UP Congress chief Raj Babbar had said.
Azad, in the past week, had said that his outfit would field strong candidates against Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Union Minister Smriti Irani if the Opposition fails to pose a challenge to them. He also demanded the anti-BJP block to "strengthen" its battle against the "saffron forces".