Delhi chief minister Arvind Kejriwal came under fire on Friday after he used the word 'thulla' to describe Delhi policemen in an interview to a television news channel.
'Thulla' is a derogatory slang commonly used in Delhi to refer to policemen.
In his interview to India Today - due to be aired on Friday night - Kejriwal said: "A case can be lodged by the Anti-Corruption Branch against anyone for being involved in corrupt practices. But these people say you can't lodge a case against members of the Delhi Police. If a 'thulla' of the Delhi Police asks a roadside vendor for money, a case should not be registered against him, this is not acceptable."
Reacting over Kejriwal's remark, Delhi Police commissioner BS Bassi said he could not believe any person would use such a word. "I believe all institutions and instrumentalities of the state must have respect for each other. Nation-building can be done only when we have mutual respect for each other. I refuse to believe that the honourable chief minister has said any word of this sort," Bassi said.
Kejriwal had called a 10-day protest in Delhi last year to demand that the city's police force be put under his government's control. He failed to secure control over the police as the Centre refused to agree because of Delhi's status as the national capital.
The face-off between the Centre and Kejriwal has paralysed the city-state's anti-corruption arm , casting shadows over a key promise to fight graft that the AAP leader had made to his voters.
Delhi's chief administrator LG Najeeb Jung picked his man, Mukesh Kumar Meena, to head the unit, triggering a fresh round in the worsening turf war between the Centre and the state government.
On Friday, Ankit Lal, who is known to be associated with Kejriwal's Aam Aadmi Party, added to the controversy over the CM's remark by tweeting:
Thulla is to Delhi what Pandu is for Mumbai!— Ankit Lal (@ankitlal) July 17, 2015
Several others took to Twitter to comment:
That's what people 'fondly' call policemen- thulla. Another matter that Yugpurush doesn't speak decent language. https://t.co/LABsp8mqxw— Parin Shah (@ParinVShah) July 17, 2015
Had no idea that referring to Cops as Thulla/ Pandu hurts feelings. Ok, stop custodial killings, false cases, laziness and we'll be nice.— Arun Nambiar (@aruns_nambiar) July 17, 2015
Before reacting on Arvind remarks on "Thulla", Bassi must understand,Same Arvind compensates martyrs with 1Cr. Thulla is for corrupt one.— Gajendra (@Airavta) July 17, 2015
I am telling you Delhi Police would have dragged Kejriwal to courts, had it been any lesser non thulla organisation.— Intel Upload Failure (@Johnny_Unchain) July 17, 2015