Lucknow: The vice-chairman of Uttar Pradesh Khadi and Gram Udyog Board was on Tuesday sacked from the post after he was detained by police for allegedly assaulting a photo journalist in Kaisarbagh area of the city.

Natwar Goel, an SP member who enjoyed the status of a minister of state as the board's vice-chairman, was detained after an FIR lodged the photo journalist accusing him and his supporters of manhandling him.

SP spokesman Rajendra Chaudhary said state party president and Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav sacked Goel from the post and also from the party on charges of indiscipline.

Senior Superintendent of Police R K Chaturvedi said, "An FIR has been registered on the complaint lodged by the photo journalist and the accused is being questioned to verify the incident. If verified he would be arrested."

In his complaint, the journalist, Ashutosh Gupta, alleged that he was assaulted by Goel and his supporters when he had gone to take photographs of an alleged unauthorized underconstruction building being constructed after razing down an aided college.

"When I was returning after taking photographs of the construction work, Goel came along with his security personnel and dragged me to his cabin where I was assaulted," Gupta alleged.

He alleged that Goel also threatened him of dire consequences. Goel, however, refuted the charges.

Meanwhile, Uttar Pradesh Accredited Journalist Association has condemned the incident and demanded action against Goel.

BJP and Congress also attacked the party for the incident. "This is not the first incident, since SP has come to power the party leaders and office-bearers have been indulging into such incidents," BJP spokesman Vijay Bahadur Pathit said.


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