New Delhi: Two youths belonging to a pro-Hindutva outfit manhandled Communist Party of India-Marxist (CPI-M) General Secretary Sitaram Yechury at a press conference here on Wednesday.
Enraged CPI-M members pounced upon the attackers, who are Hindu Sena activists, and thrashed them before handing them over to police.
The CPI-M politburo has strongly condemned the attack and blamed the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) for the incident.
Yechury, who was addressing a press conference on the violence in Madhya Pradesh's Mandsaur where five protesting farmers were killed in alleged police firing on Tuesday, described the attack on him as an attempt by the RSS "to silence the voices of dissent".
"We will not be cowed down by Sangh's goondagardi to silence us. This is a battle for the soul of India, which we will win," he tweeted.
Upendra Kumar and Pawan Kaul -- the attackers -- were taken to Mandir Marg Police Station.
The Hindu Sena activists entered the CPI-M office premises in Gole Market area of central Delhi chanting "Bharat Mata ki Jai" and slogans against Yechury, a police official said.
Hindu Sena President Vishnu Gupta told IANS that their two party workers were detained by police "for staging a peaceful protest against CPI-M for their article against the Indian Army" and had done "nothing" but only demanded the party's apology.
The CPI-M politburo later issued a statement condemning the attack by the two Hindu Sena activists and said: "This is typical of the RSS methodology of seeking to browbeat and intimidate the opposition."
"Masquerading as journalists, these persons tried to enter the hall where the conference was being held and started shouting anti-CPI-M slogans. They were immediately apprehended by CPI-M workers present there and handed over to police posted there.
"Such tactics will not be allowed to succeed," the statement said.