Run-ins with cops, dinner at auto driver's home mark Kejriwal's visit … – The Indian Express

Three town halls in a day but the highlight of Delhi Chief Minister and Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) national convener Arvind Kejriwal’s day-long visit to Ahmedabad was his run-ins with the police.
The first was when Kejriwal and Gujarat AAP president Gopal Italia claimed that the police had raided AAP’s ‘data and management’ office in Ahmedabad Sunday and Monday. This, even as the Ahmedabad police denied the AAP claims.
The second was when Kejriwal was stopped by his security detail when he chose to ride in an autorickshaw on his way to dine at the driver’s home.
Watch | #AAP national convenor and Delhi CM #ArvindKejriwal is headed for dinner at an auto driver’s house in #Gujarat#arvindkejriwalingujarat
The Indian Express (@IndianExpress) September 12, 2022
Speaking at two different town halls, Italia and Kejriwal gave specifics of the alleged raid. They alleged that three police officials from the Navrangpura police station of Ahmedabad conducted the raids on Sunday and Monday.
“We are a poor party with no money. The policemen searched our office for two hours and left. They were asking our people about money. They left when we said there was no money. Today, the Ahmedabad police said no raid took place. This is surprising,” Kejriwal, who arrived late Sunday on a three-day visit to Gujarat, said addressing a town hall of traders in Ahmedabad Monday.
Hitting out against the ‘police state’ for making raids a regular affair, Kejriwal said, “Yesterday, you raided with three police personnel… We also know the names of those police personnel. There was no search warrant, no document, they just came, searched and left. When we raised our voice saying we have been raided, they said ‘there’s no raid.’ Aise policiya sarkar chalegi? (Will a police state run the government?)”
ગઈકાલે આમ આદમી પાર્ટીની ડેટા ઓફિસ ઉપર પોલીસે રેઈડ કરી હતી અને આખી ઓફિસમાં તમામ કબાટ, ડ્રોઅર, કોમ્પ્યુટર, ડાયરી વગેરે ચેક કર્યા હતા.
ડેટા ઓફિસ ચેક કરનાર પોલીસનું નામ પૂછતાં તેઓએ નવરંગપુરા પોલીસ સ્ટેશનમાંથી હિતેષભાઈ તેમજ પારસભાઈ અને એક અજાણ્યો વ્યક્તિ હોવાનું જણાવ્યું હતું.
— Gopal Italia (@Gopal_Italia) September 12, 2022
Italia first spoke about the raids at the auto drivers’ town hall, “The BJP is scared of the AAP. So, after the Delhi raids, they are conducting unauthorised raids here in Gujarat now,” he said.
He tweeted in Gujarati that the police raided the “data office of AAP yesterday and checked all cupboards, drawers, computers, diaries, etc in the entire office.”
Ahmedabad city police was quick to respond to Italia’s tweet saying, “The news of the AAP’s office being raided yesterday by the Ahmedabad City police has been doing the rounds on social media. No such raid has been conducted by the Ahmedabad police.”
Reiterating the same, Navrangpura police station inspector PK Patel told The Indian Express, “Their office is behind our police station. No raid was carried out.”
However, Italia countered the police’s tweet with another post on the micro-blogging site. He stated, “Sir, you’ve dismissed the matter of raid by tweeting but at present there is heavy police deployment at our ‘data and management’ office. The raid is still on and a large number of police teams are still at that office.”
At the town hall of auto rickshaw drivers, Italia claimed, “The police told us they were sent to search the place. When asked whether they have written orders for the search, the police said they don’t, but have been given orders by the higher authorities. I have taken their phone numbers as well.”
Meanwhile, BJP spokesperson Yagnesh Dave attacked the AAP for resorting to lies for ‘self-promotion’ and demanded the party must post CCTV footage of the said raids. “We know that a lord of lies from Delhi is also here today,” Dave said in a veiled attack on Kejriwal.
कल आम आदमी पार्टी के कार्यालय पर अहमदाबाद शहर पुलिस द्वारा रेड करने में आई, ऐसा समाचार सोशल मीडिया से ज्ञात हुआ है.
*इस प्रकार का कोई रेड अहमदाबाद शहर पुलिस के द्वारा करने में नहीं आई है*
— Ahmedabad Police 👮‍♀️અમદાવાદ પોલીસ (@AhmedabadPolice) September 12, 2022
Asked if the police were probing the possibility of people impersonating police having intruded the AAP office, inspector Patel said, “We have not received any complaint to that effect. If we do, we will probe accordingly.”
The day further turned eventful when Kejriwal, Italia and AAP national joint secretary Isudan Gadhvi were stopped by the police citing security reasons while riding to auto driver Vikram Dantani’s home for dinner in his auto.
Dantani’s home was in Ghatlodia that falls in Chief Minister Bhupendra Patel’s constituency. Videos circulated by AAP show Kejriwal refusing the Gujarat police security and asking the police personnel to “protect your chief minister and your ministers”.
“This protocol is what is making Gujarat’s public miffed with its leaders. Ask your leaders to break protocol and go amid the public. We don’t want your security, why are you forcing us? You have kept us confined… I want to go amid the public. You give your security to the ministers, I’m the public’s man. You can’t arrest me. This is an arrest. You are not letting me go in an auto. You are confining me”, he was heard saying.
Reacting to the events, BJP spokesperson Yamal Vyas put out a video statement saying, “a leader from a party in Delhi has come here to do drama and spread lies. When his lies are exposed, he tries to gain sympathy…the people of Gujarat have seen through this and are not impressed”
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Sohini GhoshSohini is a senior correspondent based in Gujarat, primarily covering … read more
Rashi MishraRashi is a trainee journalist with The Indian Express' Ahmedabad burea… read more


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