The Congress on Thursday mounted more pressure on the Kejriwal government, demanding the immediate dismissal of Law Minister Jitender Singh Tomar, who has been in the middle of an alleged fake degree controversy.
With slogans such as “Fake degree, fake government” and “AAP’s fake lawyer, resign now”, protesters targeted Tomar as well as Kejriwal. The Delhi Police had to use water cannons after scores of Congress protesters attempted to break barricades while marching towards the Delhi Secretariat.
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Delhi party chief Ajay Maken said the protest would not subside until Tomar was removed from the cabinet. “We will continue our agitation till the minister is sacked. We also demand that Arvind Kejriwal step down as chief minister, taking moral responsibility for the issue,” Maken told the gathering. “The AAP had come to power promising clean politics. But its leader is now protecting the corrupt.”
A Bihar-based university, from where Tomar claims to have finished his law education, told the Delhi High Court on Wednesday that his provisional certificate is “fabricated and does not exist in the institution’s record”. The Tilak Manjhi Bhagalpur University also told the the court that the serial number of the provisional certificate showed the name of another person, not Tomar’s.
With the Congress having no members in the Delhi Assembly, Maken’s challenge is to ensure that the party doesn’t lose its relevance in the capital, which it ruled for 15 years till 2013.
According to leaders, the Congress’s tactics of street protests and dharnas, which is reminiscent of the AAP’s tactics prior to the 2013 Assembly elections, will be key to remaining in people’s view.
“We may not have anyone in the Assembly, but BJP barely has any presence there either. All opposition to the government has to take place outside the Assembly,” a senior leader said.
The BJP too had staged a similar protest on the “fake certificate” outside Kejriwal’s residence on Wednesday.