Arvind Kejriwal claims denied permission for rally by Delhi Police at BJP’s behest

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New Delhi | Updated: Mar 24, 2019 8:36 AM

Aam Aadmi Party convener and Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal Saturday claimed that he was denied permission for a rally in Sant Nagar Chowk here by the Delhi Police at the behest of the BJP.

Arvind Kejriwal, delhi cm Arvind KejriwalArvind Kejriwal

Aam Aadmi Party convener and Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal Saturday claimed that he was denied permission for a rally in Sant Nagar Chowk here by the Delhi Police at the behest of the BJP. Police, however, said the permission for the proposed public meeting was not given as the site witnesses heavy traffic snarls and huge footfall of people on weekends due to weekly market. They said they had proposed an alternative venue which was 150 metres away from the site.

“BJP gets my public rally cancelled today thro police. Police denies permission. How many BJP rallies were denied permission by police in Delhi in last 5 yrs? (sic)” Kejriwal said in a tweet. He said the people will teach the BJP a lesson for not fulfilling its promise of granting full statehood to Delhi. Union minister and BJP leader Vijay Goel said Kejriwal should approach the Election Commission if he had any issues and not indulge in “drama”.

Deputy Commissioner of Police (Outer) Seju P Kuruvilla, while replying to Kejriwal’s tweet, said, “Busy intersection of Sant Nagar Chowk was not found fit for a proposed public meeting of 2000, with around 1000 seats and a pandal, due to heavy traffic and weekly market. This was conveyed on 20-03-2018. ‘No objection’ for alternate site, 150 m away, has already been conveyed.” The AAP called the police’s response as “completely false” and a “face-saver” after it denied the party permission for the rally.

“First police cancelled the original public meeting venue for no reason. Our team kept pleading with the DM till late yesterday (Friday) evening, but when nothing happened the party was forced to cancel the meeting. It is only after CM’s tweet today that as a face saver the Delhi Police said it has allowed an alternative venue today afternoon,” the party said in a statement. It alleged the Delhi Police was “only trying to cover up its politically biased decision after the AAP exposed it”. The party, the statement said, will strongly protest the “Modi Police” move before the Election Commission.

BJP leader Goel tweeted, “There is a limit to lying. Delhi Police had communicated the decision of the rally’ cancellation due to law and order issues to Kejriwal on March 20. This is an administrative matter and if he has issues, he should go to Election Commission rather than indulging in drama.” Senior AAP leader Sanjay Singh said the BJP has “accepted defeat” ahead of the Lok Sabha polls and does not want that a free and fair election takes place.

“Our campaign was to get started and the Delhi Police cancelled our permission. At the same place, BJP leader Harsh Vardhan’s rally was held. How he got a permission but we were not given a permission,” he told reporters. Singh said the party has sought an appointment with the Election Commission to demand immediate removal of the people responsible for cancellation of the AAP rally. “We will also demand to probe BJP’s role in getting our rallies cancelled,” he added.

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