Team Anna member and senior lawyer Prashant Bhushan was violently attacked by activists of the Bhagat Singh Kranti Sena and Shri Ram Sena in his chamber located opposite the heavily guarded Supreme Court premises on Bhagwan Dass Road here on Wednesday.
The organisations claimed that the assault was in retaliation for his recent statement on Jammu and Kashmir, purportedly supporting the demand for withdrawal of security forces and a referendum to gauge public opinion.
While one of the miscreants was overpowered by lawyers and handed over to the police, the others ran away. During interrogation, the captured assailant identified himself as Inder Verma, president of Shri Ram Sena's Delhi unit. He purportedly revealed the name of another assailant as Tajinder Pal Singh Bagga, president of the Bhagat Singh Kranti Sena.
“We are questioning Inder to ascertain if the outfit had informed any media group as part of their plan before assaulting Mr. Bhushan,” said the officer.
The accused have been booked for entering into a conspiracy to commit house-trespass after preparation for hurt, assault or wrongful restraint and voluntarily causing hurt. The attack sparked off a protest against “communal and divisive forces” by India Against Corruption activists outside the Tilak Marg police station.
Mr. Bhushan was being interviewed by a Times Now news channel crew in his chamber (301) located on the third floor of the New Lawyers Chamber building when the assailants barged in around 4.15 p.m. shouting slogans on Kashmir.
Pranav Sachdeva, the senior lawyer's assistant, said: “They did not have any word with Mr. Bhushan and instead attacked him instantly.” Even as the television camera kept rolling, the miscreants slapped Mr. Bhushan, hurled fist blows, tore off his shirt and kicked him as he lost his balance and fell in the melee.
Mr. Bhushan's juniors and colleagues, who came rushing in as they heard the commotion, pounced on the assailants and managed to catch hold of one of them. The others fled but not before throwing around the pamphlets which they brought with them.
The pamphlets accused the senior lawyer of attacking the country's unity and integrity in the name of human rights. The outfits accused him of pushing his “hidden agenda” by associating himself with the India Against Corruption.