Dramatic scenes played out in Delhi Assembly Thursday with AAP MLAs and Speaker Ram Niwas Goel alleging ‘dissident’ party legislator Pankaj Pushkar had a role in an “attack” on transport minister Gopal Rai last evening on the House premises.
Swaraj Abhiyan volunteers allegedly entered the assembly with soil from Ramlila Ground and a memorandum on issue of Delhi Janlokpal Bill Wednesday evening. They allegedly entered the chamber of Transport Minister Gopal Rai and misbehaved with him.
Goel said a detailed investigation was done and Pushkar was found guilty of bringing them in. Pushkar denied the charge.
“… I have pictures of you talking to those people Pushkar ji… I called security guards also,” said Goel. He showed photocopy of register entries in which the last entry was registered in Pushkar’s name. Goel said, “You brought those guys… I relaxed the norms for common people who (could) come with you but this has been misused… We caught five people and called the police…”
While Pushkar kept saying his view should be heard, Goel asked Rai to address the House. Rai said he did not want to raise this (issue) in the house. He described Swaraj Abhiyan members as “Twitterbaaz”, pseudo-nationalists and who had nothing to do with the Janlokpal movement.
“People entered my room forcibly. I stopped my people in the room and asked them not to react. These Twitterbaaz were never seen when we were protesting for Janlokpal…” Rai added he had suffered cane blows during the movement, as had Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal. He said, “People deceived us and AAP came into being. This Janlokpal would be praised worldwide.”
Pushkar, with hands folded, told the Speaker to give him time to give his account of the incident. “… I should be allowed to present my case,” he said. Goel responded by asking him to apologise to the House.
Leader of opposition Vijender Gupta too asked the Speaker to hear Pushkar’s account of the events. Rai then said the matter should not be continued. Goel said it had been handed over to the police.
Deputy CM Manish Sisodia said, “House should get inspiration from the minister… with magnanimity he has refused to take any action against his attackers. Police will inquire.”
Later, Pushkar said outside the assembly that Abhiyan volunteers came to him as they were going to every MLA and offering soil to every one along with the memorandum. “Give me call records or any pass or any documents that prove I let them enter. I did not. This is how brute majority works,” said Pushkar.
Responding to the allegations, Swaraj Abhiyan media in-charge Anupam said, “Boys had gone to offer soil and remind them of their promise to the country and Anna (Hazare). None of them misbehaved. This is a fabricated version of the incident.”