Delhi crisis: AAP plays dalit, Muslim card after arrest of MLAs

AAP Presser Sanjay Singh (left) and Ashutosh Srivastav of AAP addressing a press conference | Arvind Jain

Caught in the eye of a storm over the alleged assault on the Delhi chief secretary by its MLAs, the Aam Aadmi Party on Wednesday sought to play the dalit and Muslim card.

It said the Delhi Police, acting on the complaint made by the top bureaucrat, had arrested MLAs Prakash Jarwal and Amanatullah Khan, who are dalit and Muslim, respectively.

The party also demanded to know why the police has not acted on the complaints of Minister Imran Hussain and another senior functionary, Ashish Khetan, who were allegedly manhandled at the Delhi Secretariat by a mob on Tuesday.

“Acting on the directions of the BJP, the police have arrested a dalit MLA and another MLA, Amanatullah Khan,” said AAP leader Ashutosh.

Asked whether the party was playing the dalit or minority card, AAP's Sanjay Singh, a Rajya Sabha member, said, “We are only bringing the reality of what happens under BJP rule before you.”

The two AAP leaders, at a press conference, asked why the police has been prompt in arresting the two MLAs based on allegations made by the chief secretary, even as the charges are not based on any evidence.

On the other hand, they claimed, no action has been taken so far on complaints made by Hussain and Khetan, which are backed by video evidence of what transpired at the Secretariat.

“The chief secretary said he was assaulted. There is no evidence or witness to back him, but what he has said is (treated as) Ramayana or Bhagwad Gita. A minister says he was manhandled, but no action is taken on his complaint,” Singh said.

The AAP also pointed out that Jarwal, who was arrested on Tuesday night, had also lodged a police complaint in which he alleged that Prakash had made casteist comments against him at the meeting at Kejriwal's residence, where the top official claims he was beaten up.

The party, alleging double standards on part of the police, said no action has been taken on Jarwal's complaint.

“The chief secretary is lying. There is no evidence to prove his allegations. Let there be an inquiry into the entire matter. The truth will be there for everyone to see,” Singh said.

Caught in a new controversy, the AAP played victim, saying the chief secretary's allegations and the events that have unfolded since are a part of a well-thought out conspiracy to defame the Kejriwal government and render it non-functional. “The Central government cannot bear to see the AAP government. It wants to dismiss it at any cost,” Singh said.

He also claimed that the latest events had helped the Centre divert the attention of the people from the Nirav Modi case.