The Mumbai Police on Thursday filed an FIR against Aam Addmi Party (AAP) leader Arvind Kejriwal, a day after his local train and autorickshaw ride in the city disrupted traffic and triggered chaos.
The airport police registered the FIR against Kejriwal, party leader Preeti Menon and others for unlawful assembly and disobedience of order under the Indian Penal Code, and sections of the Bombay Police Act.
Facing criticism over the chaos and vandalism that marked his travel in public transport on Wednesday, Kejriwal accused the media of blowing up the matter and dismissed the charge that it was a "symbolic stunt".
Notwithstanding complaints from commuters of having been inconvenienced by the AAP leader's rides, Kejriwal said the media was to be held responsible for the "whole tamasha (drama)".
“The whole tamasha was staged by the media asking leading questions to commuters about inconvenience caused by my local train travel. Our people did not indulge in any vandalism. The common people were happy with my trip," he told a Marathi news channel.
He dismissed talk that his auto and local train travels were only "a symbolic stunt", adding that he always used all modes of transport.
Kejriwal repeated his allegation that the media was paid to project Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) prime ministerial candidate Narendra Modi and defame the AAP.
"I request the media with folded hands not to destroy the small sapling of AAP which has offered hope to common people.”
Kejriwal started his Lok Sabha campaign in Maharashtra on Wednesday with a ride on a suburban train in Mumbai. This was marked by black flags and chaos.
Later, he took out a ‘Jhaadu Chalao Yatra’ through Mumbai streets with AAP Lok Sabha nominees Medha Patkar and Meera Sanyal.
He also attended a private fund-raising meeting and began another roadshow traversing south Mumbai.
(With inputs from PTI, Pune)