The war of words between two groups of civil society has intensified. Social activists Aruna Roy and Nikhil Dey have taken "exception" to Arvind Kejriwal's remarks that she had alleged that Team Anna did not discuss the Jan Lokpal issue with her.
Roy and Dey also took exception to remarks that she had sent back Team Anna members from the gate, saying she did not want to talk to Kejriwal.
At his press conference at Ralegan Siddhi on Saturday, Kejriwal reportedly also alleged that Roy was not ready for a dialogue. In a strong rebuttal, Roy and Dey said that since the meeting was at veteran journalist Kuldip Nayar's house, she could not have sent - nor would she send anyone back - from the gate of anyone's house.
"We never met, saw or talked to Kejriwal that day to be able to send him away from the gate. Nor did we ask for anyone to be sent away," the duo said in a statement. While at Nayar's house for a meeting with Justice Rajinder Sachar, Medha Patkar and possibly Prashant Bhushan, the two activists got to know that some other members of India Against Corruption (IAC) were also coming.
Then they stressed that they were not mandated by the NCPRI to discuss the law or the demands of the campaign - a point Nayar endorsed.
Claiming that they met all those who came to Nayar's house that morning, "We requested Prashant Bhushan to call Shekhar Singh of NCPRI to fix a meeting. This meeting was fixed and held. At no point has the NCPRI said it will not meet Kejriwal," Roy and Dey said, regarding discussions between IAC and NCPRI on the Lokpal issue.
Roy denied alleging that Team Anna did not discuss the issue with them and pointed out that Kejriwal himself has spoken of three meetings being held.
"So the allegation that we refused to engage in dialogue is wrong," she added.
She also countered Kejriwal's charges that she did not moot an alternative bill or law but a proposal, a concept note and that many of NCPRI's proposals were "unconstitutional".
"The NCPRI will discuss these in the public domain."