On Saturday morning, when 29-year-old Suresh Chauhan Gadiyalohar left home, he didn’t tell anyone where he was headed. A metal scrap dealer, he didn’t go to work, nor did he visit his brother-in-law Hansraj Gadiyalohar near his house in Moti Nagar’s Kailash Park. “He’s a grown man; we didn’t bother asking about his whereabouts. He’s a harmless person after all,” Hansraj told The Indian Express.
Around 6.30 pm, Suresh’s acquaintances reached his home to tell his 26-year-old wife that police had picked him up for attacking Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal. “The acquaintances must have been with him at the road show when this happened. Since then we have been at Moti Nagar police station. We haven’t met him so far. If we knew he was going to slap the CM, we would have never let him go. He is wrong,” said Hansraj.
As Kejriwal waved at crowds from an open gipsy at Karampura, where he was part of the roadshow to support AAP’s New Delhi candidate Brijesh Goyal, Gadiyalohar, clad in a red T-shirt, scurried on top of the bonnet and slapped the CM. He was immediately pulled down by AAP supporters, and handed over the police. The Delhi Police spokesperson claimed Gadiyalohar was an “AAP supporter, who used to organise the party’s rallies and meetings… but got disenchanted due to the leaders’ behaviour and the party’s distrust in the armed forces”.
Told about the police claim, Hansraj said he was “shocked”. “Suresh has never been associated with any party — AAP, BJP or Congress. He is uneducated; we fall under the OBC category. I am very close to him; I would know if he was ever involved with a political party,” said Hansraj.
His family did claim that he was “unhappy with the promises made by politicians, which were never delivered”. Hansraj recalled a dinner conversation with Suresh less than a week ago: “He said that ‘jo kaam nahi karega, woh pitega’. I didn’t take it seriously. He likes Modi ji… we all do. But I want to clarify that he is not with any political party at all. We don’t have time for such things… we have our families to worry about; he has a young daughter”.