AAP MLA Prakash Jarwal held for ‘assaulting’ Delhi chief secy, Kejriwal’s adviser detained
Aam Aadmi Party Delhi unit chief spokesperson says Prakash Jarwal was arrested based on a “frivolous” complaint.Updated: Feb 21, 2018, 12:32 IST
Delhi Police on Tuesday night arrested Aam Aadmi Party MLA Prakash Jarwal a few hours after chief secretary Anshu Prakash accused some ruling party lawmakers of assaulting him at the residence of chief minister Arvind Kejriwal. Jarwal was arrested after he was picked up from his home in Deoli, his constituency in south Delhi.
Police also detained Kejriwal’s adviser, VK Jain, from his house in Maharani Bagh on Wednesday morning. Police said he is only being questioned to help with the probe as he was present during the incident. It was Jain who had allegedly called the chief secretary for the meeting.
The already tenuous relationship between the Delhi government and the bureaucracy broke down on Tuesday after the city’s top bureaucrat Prakash alleged that he was assaulted by Okhla MLA Amanatullah Khan and others in Kejriwal’s presence late Monday night.
An FIR was registered against Khan and others on Prakash’s complaint who in turn was accused of making casteist remarks.
Jarwal was arrested on a frivolous complaint, AAP’s Delhi unit chief spokesperson Saurabh Bharadwaj said.
“Delhi Police arrested elected MLA without any evidence. What about arrest of IAS Officers who can be seen beating ,Minister in Secretariate? There is FIR by Minister as well as video evidence, but no arrests,” Bharadwaj tweeted.
Environment minister Imran Hussain and party leader Ashish Khetan had alleged that they were manhandled at the state secretariat.
In his complaint, Prakash accused Khan and others of dealing “several blows with fists” to his head and temple for refusing to comply with their demand to release TV advertisements highlighting the achievements of the government, which recently completed three years in office.
Deputy chief minister Manish Sisodia said the allegations were “bizarre”. The meeting was about people not getting their supply of rations, Sisodia said as he accepted that things got “heated” but insisted there was no assault.
The AAP responded with counter-charges. MLAs Ajay Dutt and Jarwal filed a police complaint against Prakash for “casteist remarks”.
Upset over the alleged assault, government officers have decided to boycott meetings called by ministers and confined themselves to written communication.
Officers serving with the Delhi government often find themselves caught in crossfire between the Centre-appointed lieutenant governor and the elected government.
The problem arises from Delhi’s unique status as a Union Territory functioning as the Capital, with the state government having no say in matters of police, public order and land, which are under the control of the L-G.