Union home minister and senior Congress leader Sushilkumar Shinde on Wednesday called Arvind Kejriwal a "Veda Mukhyamantri" (mad chief minister), saying he had to cancel the leave of several policemen because of Kejriwal.
Congress ally Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) too joined the attack, saying "CM in Delhi" stands for “Chosen Madness”.
Kejriwal continued to be at the receiving end of criticism over his two-day protest for state government control over Delhi Police, which is under the Union home ministry, and action against “errant” police officials.
The unprecedented government-led protest, which was called off Tuesday evening, saw the AAP attract sharp criticism from rivals for triggering chaos in the Capital and raising the possibility of disruption in Republic Day celebrations.
AAP detractors intensified their attacks on Wednesday, describing Kejriwal, his ministers and colleagues as "unguided missiles".
Kejriwal had called Shinde corrupt and inefficient and dared the home minister to evict him from the protest venue near Rail Bhavan in central Delhi.
Who is saying what the day after:
Sushilkumar Shinde (Union home minister)
"When I was in Kherwadi police station in Mumbai's Bandra area, I did not get leave because there were Sena (led) riots. Similarly, yesterday (Tuesday) in Delhi, because of a 'veda mukhyamantri' (mad chief minister) sitting there (on dharna), I had to cancel the leave of policemen," Shinde, who was targeted repeatedly by Kejriwal, said.
He, however, did not name the chief minister.
P Chidambaram (Finance minister)
Chidambaram said the AAP should quit if they did not know how to govern. "That (holding two-day dharna on Delhi streets) is not governance. That is abdicating governance. If you don't know how to govern, quit."
Taking a dig at Kejriwal during a session on 'India Outlook' at a NDTV panel discussion at the World Economic Forum (WEF), Chidambaram said, "Somebody sent me an SMS. It said Vishnu told Arjun go do your dharma, but he told Kejriwal, go do your dharna."
Randip Surjewala (Congress spokesperson)
Kejriwal addresses supporters and media as Delhi Police prevent him from reaching the home ministry. (AFP photo)
"Kejriwal should look within and realise the inconvenience caused to common man due to their theatrics and drama of agitation." Digvijaya Singh (Congress general secretary)
Digvijaya taunted the Delhi chief minister asking why he sent AAP leader Yogendra Yadav to negotiate with Lieutenant-Governor Najeeb Jung to end the stir.
"Kejriwal said they would not negotiate. It's not a grocery shop. But ultimately they did negotiate," he said and added that Kejriwal had no respect for law. Sandip Dikshit (Congress spokesperson)
Dikshit said the agitation "drama was staged by AAP to take away people's attention from other issues they were not able to address". V Narayanasamy (Union Minister)
Narayanasamy said the people of national capital had realised that the fledgling party was incapable of governing as it had failed to fulfil poll promises. "They are indulging in tall talk. They have not fulfilled their promises made to the people before (Delhi) elections. Their achievement is zero and people of the state understand that they are not capable of governing.”
Chief minister Arvind Kejriwal on a protest near India Gate, in New Delhi. (Virendra Singh Gosain/HT photo)
DP Tripathi (NCP leader)
Dubbing AAP leaders as "symbols of arrogance", the NCP leader dared Kejriwal to write a single-line letter to the Congress and request it to withdraw support.
Taking exception to the way Kejriwal spoke about Shinde, Tripathi said the CM in Delhi stood for "Chosen Madness" as he had "trampled upon justice, rule of law and the Constitution".
Asked about Kejriwal becoming prime minister, he remarked it would be "Permanent Madness". Arun Jaitley (BJP leader)
Jaitley described the AAP protest as "unacceptable" and said the party would not appeal to Lok Sabha voters because it was anarchic and lacked the qualities required for providing much-needed political stability and responsible governance. Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi (BJP leader)
"Leaders of AAP should realise they cannot remain unguided missiles anymore as they are now bound by the Constitution. Still, they behave like unguided missiles," Naqvi said. "They are dream merchants. They just sell dreams." Narad Rai (Uttar Pradesh cabinet minister)
Rai, who was in the news recently for his remarks on deaths in Muzaffarnagar relief camps, described AAP leaders as a "gang of liars" and asked Kejriwal to step down immediately.
The minister alleged the Delhi chief minister was a "liar" and his protest against police officials was a "cheap step".
Delhi chief minister Arvind Kejriwal along with his party supporters in New Delhi. (AFP photo)
KC Tyagi (Janata Dal-United leader)
Tyagi, however, defended the protest held by Kejriwal to suspend “errant” police officials, and said he preferred Kejriwal's anarchism to the Congress and the BJP's status quo.
"There can be disagreement on the language and execution of a protest. But I prefer Kejriwal's anarchism to the Congress and the BJP's status quo." Chetan Bhagat (Author)
Bhagat, an AAP supporter, lashed out
at the new political outfit for the dharna in Delhi, calling it an "item girl of politics".
Bhagat said he was "ashamed" they had resorted to such action. He told NDTV, "AAP has really, really let me down. I feel so let down by their antics. The cost-benefit analysis of this just does not add up.” Kiran Bedi (Former IPS officer and social activist)
Bedi accused Kejriwal of sending a wrong message to the people and added it could prove costly for the AAP.
"Unless and until both sides have testified before the inquiry, there shouldn’t be a one-sided decision. It will be injustice, if this happens. Only the police officers were removed, but the minister (Somnath Bharti), against whom there are allegations, is still at his place. In the public’s eye, it is called injustice. It is unjust," said Bedi.
With inputs from Agencies
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