Union home minister Sushilkumar Shinde on Wednesday called Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) leader Arvind Kejriwal a ‘mad chief minister’, saying he had to cancel the leave of several policemen because of Kejriwal, TV channels reported.
Speaking at an event in Maharashtra, the home minister said, "When I was in Kherwadi (as a policeman), my leave was cancelled right after my wedding because there were riots. Now because of a 'veda mukhyamantri' (Marathi for 'mad chief minister') on dharna, I had to cancel the leaves of policemen".
Shinde’s statement is the latest in slanging match between Kejriwal and Shinde.
Read: Arvind Kejriwal calls off stir, says its victory of people
Kejriwal had called Shinde corrupt and inefficient and dared the home minister to evict him from the dharna venue near Rail Bhavan during his protest against the Delhi Police.
While announcing his stir earlier on Monday, Kejriwal had said, “Some say I am an anarchist, that I am spreading anarchy. I am willing to agree to that. So, I want to spread that anarchy to the home minister’s office. I have come to spread anarchy in the police commissioner's house too.”
The Delhi CM failed to secure his main demand during his protest that the city's police force be put under his government's control. Shinde ruled out transferring control of Delhi Police to the state government. “It is the national capital. That isn’t possible.”
Read: Police, Shinde figure high on CM’s ‘must-fix’ list
Kejriwal also blamed Shinde for causing inconvenience to the people of Delhi. "Shinde has closed the metro stations. I had told Metro officials to run trains. They said they cannot do it as the Delhi Police have closed them."
The Delhi CM on Tuesday called off his protest after Lieutenant-Governor Najeeb Jung appealed the stir be ended keeping in mind the issue of national security ahead of Republic Day celebrations. The L-G partially agreed to the demands raised by the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP), Kejriwal told cheering supporters after dark. Two policemen were sent on leave pending an inquiry into alleged negligence by them.
The home minister earlier on Monday had ruled out any action against Delhi Police personnel till a judicial inquiry was over and asked Kejriwal to maintain the dignity of the office he held.
Read: Delhi Police sub-inspector who kept Delhi CM Kejriwal company at protest
“He should maintain the dignity of the chair of chief minister and wait till the judicial probe is completed. After all he is a CM..., (which is) a high post. He should cooperate,” Shinde had said.
Anjali Damania, leader of the AAP in Maharashtra, demanded an apology from Shinde for his comment.
"Is this kind of language acceptable to those pointing fingers at us," Damania asked.
However, the Delhi unit of AAP chose not to respond to Shinde's remark.
"Sushilkumar Shinde is a senior leader and we have no comments to offer on what he said," said AAP spokesperson Deepak Vajpayee.