AAP’s Gujarat affairs in-charge and Delhi MLA Gulab Singh, against whom a non-bailable warrant was issued following charges of extortion, surrendered before Surat police on Sunday, hours before party convener Arvind Kejriwal’s rally in the city.
While Singh said allegations against him were “baseless”, Kejriwal, who was still Vadodara, termed the non-bailable warrant as an “attempt” by BJP president Amit Shah to distrupt his rally in Surat. Legislator from Matiala, Singh is the 15th AAP MLA to be arrested.
A team of Delhi Police has secured a 72-hour transit remand for Singh from a local court.
Singh and his supporters, shouting slogans of ‘Bharat Mata ki Jai’, ‘Vande Mataram’ and ‘Inquilab Zindabad’, reached the police commissioner’s office in the afternoon, and he surrendered before Umra police inspector G A Sarwaiya, who later said, “We have carried out official procedure of handing over Singh to Delhi Police.”
“I am in Gujarat since September 6, and was here when the FIR was filed on September 13. Police raided my office and got nothing incriminating. The Centre is directing arrest of AAP MLAs, but we are not going to bow, and are ready for any consequences,” he told reporters before his surrender and subsequent arrest.
Last month, two property dealers, Deepak Sharma and Rinku Diwan, had alleged that Satish and Devinder, who work in Singh’s office, and an associate Jagdish were extorting money from them by threatening to get the building from where the property dealers were operating, demolished.
A case under Section 384 (punishment for extortion) IPC was registered at Bindapur police station in Delhi on September 13.
Reacting to the development, Kejriwal told reporters in Vadodara: “I have heard that Amit Shah has been making plans to disrupt the rally in Surat. This is not my rally, it is the people’s rally.” He further said the case against Singh was “fabricated” and that the BJP government was “scared”, and therefore was making such moves.