Sachin Pilot arrested on way to Bhatta-Parsaul

Union minister and Congress leader Sachin Pilot was arrested on Sunday on his way to Bhatta-Parsaul village in Greater Noida which has grabbed the nation's attention for clashes between farmers and police over land acquisition.

"He has been detained under Section 151 of the CrPC (Criminal Procedure Code) and he has been be taken to police lines," Ram Kishan Sharma, additional district magistrate of Ghaziabad, told reporters here.

Pilot, who was on his way to Bhatta-Parsaul after visiting villagers lodged in the Dasna jail near Ghaziabad, was stopped and arrested near Lal Kuan on National Highway 24.

Pilot sat on the road and protested against the restriction to enter Bhatta-Parsaul, before being taken to the police station amid slogans against Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Mayawati by Congress workers.

Bhatta-Parsaul hit the headlines on May 7 when four people, including two policemen, were killed when villagers clashed with policemen while agitating for higher compensation for their lands acquired by the Uttar Pradesh government for developmental projects.

Some 25 villagers are said to have been detained, though police were silent about this.

Most men aged between 18-55 fled their homes following the incident, fearing a crackdown by security forces.

"We are not breaking any law. We are going to Bhatta-Parsaul to console the families of villagers. My arrest is unjustified," said Pilot, minister of state for communication and information technology, before police took him away.

"We are not only going to Bhatta-Parsaul but also to villagers around it."

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