In what has left the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) red-faced is, the recent nine-minute video featuring party minister Sandeep Kumar, 34, in an objectionable position with two women. Soon after the CD bearing the video was handed over to Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal, Kumar was sacked from his position. Kumar was the Minister of SC/ST Welfare and Women and Child Welfare in the Delhi government. Following his expulsion, BJP staged a demonstration outside Kejriwal’s residence today, while other members of the Opposition have trained their guns against AAP.
According to sources, Kejriwal was given the particular CD 15 days back but he chose to ignore it. He took an action only when media houses broke the news. Defending the party over this, Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia said that the CD was given to them last night and withing thirty minutes of it, Kumar was removed from the party.
3:52pm: Kejriwal said that he would prefer to forfeit his party but never tolerate corruption and wrongful activities, as the AAP does not believe in hiding flaws of its members.
2:57pm: In an agitation staged against the sacked AAP cabinet minister Sandeep Kumar over the explicit CD, several members of the BJP party continue to protest outside Delhi CM Arvind Kejriwal’s residence in New Delhi
12.44 pm: In a video released by AAP, Arvind Kejriwal details about the CD received that involves Sandeep Kumar. Here are some excerpts from the video:
Yesterday, we relieved a CD, where our minister Sandeep Kumar was caught doing wrong action. We have immediately removed him. I am deeply upset by his actions. We have removed him from the cabinet and we will take an action against him soon. People must be thinking that such people are present in AAP.
There’s one thing that differentiates AAP from other parties is our approach to such events. We take a quick action against them. We don’t spare them. I am sad that such people existed in out party, but we did not cover them up. We took an action against them.
12.38: Sandeep himself got the CD made. The video shows the real side of him, says Lokendra Rana, a close aide of Kumar in a conversation with Aaj Tak.
12.14 pm: BJP protests outside Delhi Chief Minister Kejriwal’s residence. Water cannons are being used to douse the clamor. Women, too can be seen protesting against the Minister of Minister of SC/ST Welfare and Women and Child Welfare.
11.48 am: While taking a swipe at Arvind Kejriwal for his action, Swaraj Abhiyan leader Prashant Bhushan tweeted, “Waah Arvind Kejriwal Saheb, you appoint degree forgers, bribe takers as ministers and then take credit for removing them when caught!
Wah AK Saheb, you appt degree forgers, bribe takers as ministers and then take credit for removing them when caught! https://t.co/rXmWTy6nM7
— Prashant Bhushan (@pbhushan1) August 31, 2016
11.15 am: Taking to his Twitter account, Kumar in hindi reiterated that he is being framed in the video. And that is due to his Dalit identity.
11.07 am: Like Eklavya was pulled down, when people from our community rise some plot is hatched to destroy us. The plot was hatched ever since I installed Dr Ambedkar’s statue. I a being punished because I am a Dalit, argues Kumar.
11.04 am: I am being framed because of my Dalit identity. The CD should be investigated, I am not there in the video, says Sandeep Kumar.
10.54 am: Taking a dig at Kejriwal-led Aam Aadmi Party, Ajay Maken, Congress leader tweeted three minister from the party who had been removed in the recent time.
1.LawMinister-Fake Law Degree
— Ajay Maken (@ajaymaken) August 31, 2016
10.30 am: Satish Upadhyay, President of the Delhi Unit of Bharatiya Janata Party tweeted that Kejriwal possessed the video since the past 15 days but chose to take an action on the same only after media houses broke the news.
So Kejriwal had this sex CD for 15days & sacked Sandeep Kumar only whn CD reached Media. Fraud CM!! #AAPKaSexScandal https://t.co/cmQ914tgUo
— Satish Upadhyay (@upadhyaysbjp) August 31, 2016
09.28 am: BJP to hold a demonstration outside Arvind Kejriwal’s house in relation to Sandeep Kumar’s video.
Om Prakash, the man who purportedly brought the alleged sex tape against AAP minister Sandeep Kumar to light, claims that he belongs to the congress party, which however, has been denied by the latter. The CD was handed late on Wednesday night, after which a meeting was on at the Chief Minister’s Flagstaff Road bungalow to decide on further action. Following which, AAP convener tweeted that Kumar was removed from the party with immediate effect.
Recd “objectionable” CD of minister Sandeep Kr. AAP stands for propriety in public life. That can’t be compromised(1/2)
— Arvind Kejriwal (@ArvindKejriwal) August 31, 2016
Removing him from Cabinet wid immediate effect(2/2)
— Arvind Kejriwal (@ArvindKejriwal) August 31, 2016
On March 8, 2015, International Women’s Day, the 34-year-old minister made headlines after he thanked his wife Ritu Verma for the “sacrifices” she had made for him, and, to thunderous applause from a packed auditorium at the Delhi Secretariat, had added, “Main roz subah inke pair chhoota hoon (I touch her feet every morning).”
Kumar is the third minister to be sacked in 18 months of AAP’s tenure. Previously, Law Minister Jitendra Singh Tomar and Environment Minister Asim Ahemd Khan have been removed over fake degrees and corruption, respectively.