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HindustanTimes Wed,23 Jul 2014

Kejriwal lashes out at BJP for attack on Bharti

PTI  Varanasi, April 24, 2014
First Published: 11:47 IST(24/4/2014) | Last Updated: 15:43 IST(24/4/2014)

AAP leader Arvind Kejriwal today lashed out at Narendra Modi over the attack on former Delhi Minister Somnath Bharti, questioning if the Gujarat model was about "threatening" people and demanded immediate intervention of the EC to ensure free and fair polls.

Accusing the local administration of not taking action against those involved in the attacks on AAP workers, Kejriwal asked, "What kind of culture BJP is bringing to this holy city.

Watch: 'Modi is behind my attack', says Somnath Bharti

Read: AAP leader Somnath Bharti beaten by alleged BJP supporters in Varanasi

"This kind of attack is against the tradition and culture of this temple city. Is this Gujarat model where people are either threatened or bought over," Kejriwal, who is locked in a high-profile electoral battle against Modi here, told reporters.

Bharti was assaulted last night allegedly by a group of BJP workers at the Assi Ghat area in Varanasi when he went there to participate in an election-related programme.

The former Delhi Chief Minister also accused the administration of adopting a "partisan" approach towards AAP and claimed that it has not initiated any action against those involved in the attacks on AAP workers.

"Our supporters are not safe here.This is a fight to finish (Aar Par Ki Ladai). Anything can happen here.For one person (Modi), the administration has closed the entire city but not heeding to any of our requests," he said.

The administration has made elaborate security arrangements for filing of nomination by Modi.

Targeting the UP government, Kejriwal said, "It appears that there has been some kind of understanding between Samajwadi Party and BJP.I have done road shows across the country.But here I have been denied permission to hold road shows."

Kejriwal said his party colleague Prashant Bhushan will complain to the Election Commission about the assault on Bharti and request it to take steps to ensure free and fair polls in the city.

Polling will take place in Varanasi on May 12.

"We have doubt whether anti-BJP people will be allowed to vote.Will free and fair polls will be possible in this kind of atmosphere," the former Delhi Chief Minister said.


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