AAP, BJP men clash after Kejriwal's 'detention' in Guj

AAP, BJP men clash after Kejriwal's 'detention' in Guj

Aam Aadmi Party convener Arvind Kejriwal faced a series of protests and was allegedly detained by police while touring Gujarat to verify BJP prime ministerial candidate Narendra Modi’s development claims on Wednesday. 

The “detention” triggered protests and violent clashes between BJP and AAP workers in Delhi, Lucknow, Allahabad and Coimbatore.

In a move to take on the Gujarat chief minister on his home turf, Kejriwal embarked on a four-day Gujarat tour to verify Modi's claims of providing water, power, education and healthcare to people. He was taken to Radhanpur police station in north Gujarat and was allowed to go after half an hour. 

AAP’s Gujarat convener Sukhdev Patel claimed that Kejriwal was detained. Kejriwal alleged that Gujarat police had acted according to “orders from the top”. “We came to know in the morning itself that all the DSPs have been instructed to stop Kejriwal under any circumstances. Modi has also been sending some people with black flags,” Kejriwal said.

Police had a different version. “Kejriwal was not detained. Since the election dates are announced, we just wanted to make sure that he follows the model code of conduct. Thus, we took him to the police station to brief him about the same,” said Patan District Superintendent of Police Parikshita Rathod.

Following the detention, over 400 AAP workers clashed with BJP supporters at BJP headquarters in New Delhi’s Ashoka Road. Mild baton-charge and water canons were used to disperse the workers. 

According to police, there was stone pelting when they reached the spot around 5:30 pm. 

“The protesters were shouting slogans against Modi, claiming that he was scared of Kejriwal and was using police against the former Delhi chief minister,” said a police officer.

AAP spokesperson and candidate from Chandni Chowk, Ashutosh and party’s National Executive member Shazia Ilmi, were at the spot but could not control the party workers. 

“Around 30-32 people were detained and legal action will be taken against them,” Deputy Commissioner of Police S B S Tyagi said. Delhi Chief Electoral Officer Vijay Dev has sought a report from Delhi Police Commissioner. 

The BJP has accused the AAP of attempting to vitiate the environment and urged the EC to take note of it. “I strongly condemn AAP’s violent protest at the gates of BJP office,” BJP President Rajnath Singh said.

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