Lucknow: Chhattisgarh Chief Minister Bhupesh Baghel returned to Raipur on Tuesday evening after he was not allowed to come out of the Lucknow airport to go and meet Congress General Secretary Priyanka Gandhi Vadra, who has been arrested after being detained.
Before returning, Baghel addressed a virtual press conference and said that it was unprecedented that a Chief Minister should be prevented from visiting a city.
“I told them that I am not going to Lakhimpur but will go to Sitapur to meet my leader. Yet they have not allowed me. This is certainly not how a democracy functions,” he said.
The Chhattisgarh Chief Minister said that he had been told that Section 144 was in place and hence, he could not be allowed to go out.
“If Section 144 is in place, how come the Prime Minister is holding a programme in Lucknow today?” asked Baghel, who is also the Congress observer for Uttar Pradesh.
Senior Congress leaders Pramod Tiwari and P.L. Punia, who had gone to the airport to receive him, were denied entry.
Earlier, Baghel, squatting on the floor at the airport, had said that he would not go back without meeting Priyanka Gandhi, who was detained early on Monday as she was going to Lakhimpur Kheri, where nine people had died in violence at a farmers’ protest on Sunday.