AAP office vandalised over Bhushan’s Kashmir remark

Two days after AAP leader Prashant Bhushan comments on Kashmir issue snowballed into a controversy, around 30 persons vandalised the AAP office in Kaushambi, Ghaziabad. The mob hurled bricks and stones at the office on Wednesday. Though the office was damaged, none was injured, police said.

The Hindu Raksha Dal, a fringe right wing group, claimed responsibility for the attack and said it was in protest against Bhushan's "anti-national comments".

On Sunday, in reference to the Armed Forces Special Powers Act in Kashmir, Bhushan had said the views of Kashmir's people should be taken into consideration to decide if the Army was required in the state to deal with internal security.

A day later, Bhushan had issued a clarification saying he shared the view that Kashmir was an integral part of India, and his words were taken out of context.

On Wednesday, around 10.30 am, the mob gathered outside the AAP office in Kaushambi, just two hundred metres away from Chief Minister Kejriwal's residence.

"They came in six vehicles and carried orange flags, which read Hindu Raksha Dal. They entered the courtyard and started vandalising the office with sticks and bricks. The attackers then broke the glass on the door, and some even threw bricks at our workers who were on the first floor," Pankaj Singh, an AAP volunteer, said.

Vishnu Gupta, president of the Hindu Rakshak Dal, said, "There are so many brave soldiers fighting in Kashmir and people like Prashant Bhushan undermine them. Kashmir is an integral part of India. If the AAP does not change its views, then this will only be a trailer of what will happen to them."

Police said 14 persons, including Bhupinder Tomar, the convener of the group, were arrested.

"We have arrested 14 persons based on the CCTV footage that the party gave us. More arrests will follow," Ghaziabad SSP Dharmender Singh said.

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