New Delhi : Delhi chief minister Arvind Kejriwal demanded on Monday the arrest of a BJP MP over the murder of a civic body official, opening up a new front in the AAP-BJP’s long-running war of attrition in the national capital.
The BJP hit back at the AAP leader, with senior party leader Subramanian Swamy terming Kejriwal a “Naxalite” for his murder charge against Maheish Girri, who launched a hunger strike outside the chief minister’s house on Sunday evening demanding either proof or an apology.The charges and counter-charges are the latest in a series of confrontations between the BJP and Kejriwal, who accuses the ruling party at the Centre of creating hurdles for his government.
MM Khan, a legal adviser in the New Delhi Municipal Corporation (NDMC), was shot dead in Jamia Nagar on May 16, a day before he was slated to pass the final order on the terms of a hotel’s operation from a property leased out by the civic body.
Speaking to reporters, Kejriwal alleged that four days before Khan’s murder, Girri had approached lieutenant governor Najeeb Jung with a letter from the hotel owner “removal” of the official from proceedings in a case pertaining to licence violation.
On May 12, the L-G allegedly forwarded the letter written by Girri to the NDMC chairman. The East Delhi MP and his party, however, denied having written any letter to the L-G.
“I condemn CM Kejriwal for running malicious campaign. I challenge CM Kejriwal and his gang of thugs to present before media and public any letter written by me to any authority on NDMC hotel matter. Or else the chief minister should resign,” said Girri.Swamy, a Rajya Sabha MP, said Kejriwal is a “Naxalite and in (the) habit of levelling baseless charges”.
Kejriwal also demanded that police should investigate the “relation” between the BJP MP and ‘The Connaught’ owner Ramesh Kakkar, a prime accused in the murder case.
In a letter to Kejriwal on June 16, Girri had invited Kejriwal to the Constitution Club for debate and produce “evidence” against him in the murder case on Sunday at 4pm.
Kejriwal did not accept the challenge following which Girri, accompanied by his party supporters, reached the chief minister’s Flagstaff Road residence and sat on hunger strike.
“Do we’ve an open debate on murder cases? Is this BJP’s way to seek criminal justice? Is it BJP’s criminal justice system to allow those who have murdered to stage dharna outside his residence and thereafter, prominent leaders of BJP reach there to support them,” Kejriwal said.