Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal was Wednesday detained by police hours after his deputy Manish Sisodia was taken into custody for trying to meet family members of an ex-serviceman who allegedly committed suicide over the OROP issue. Kejriwal’s detention outside Lady Hardinge hospital in central Delhi around 7:45 PM came after Congress Vice President Rahul Gandhi was taken into custody for the second time in a day, in an unprecedented clampdown on Opposition leaders.
Earlier Kejriwal’s movement was blocked by police for nearly three hours and he was not allowed to meet family members of ex-serviceman Ram Kishan Grewal, a resident of Haryana’s Bhiwani who ended his life yesterday by consuming poison.
Deputy Chief Minister Sisodia was detained around 1 PM and was in detention for nearly 10 hours in the Parliament Street Police Station. A Delhi Police official said Kejriwal has been taken to R K Puram Police Station in South Delhi. “This is worst than Emergency,” the Delhi chief minister told reporters before being taken away while Sisodia tweeted, “This is emergency”.
Several Congress leaders including Randeep Surjewala, Jyotiraditya Scindia and Kumari Selja were detained while police was seen dragging scores of AAP workers and many office bearers outside the Parliament Street Police station.
Sisodia said he was not told what was his offence. Police justified its action of detaining leaders of political parties saying it will not allow anyone to disturb law and order in the city. The Congress and AAP leaders accused the Modi government of being responsible for the death of Grewal.
Earlier, Kejriwal, lambasting Prime Minister Narendra Modi asserted that Grewal’s “martyrdom will not go in vain” and emphasised on the need to take his struggle forward. “The Prime Minister is lying to the entire country claiming that OROP has been implemented. If it was implemented then why Ram Kishan had to commit suicide? The extent of the deceit of the BJP government over the issue is unprecedented,” he said.
The AAP termed detention of Kejriwal and Sisodia as unprecedented. “So today @narendramodi’s police have detained CM and DyCM for wanting to meet bereaved family member of army martyr! Is this democracy?” senior AAP leader Atishi Marlena tweeted.