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'Anarchist' Aadmi Protest on Delhi's streets

March 05, 2014 23:07 IST

'Anarchist' Aadmi Protest on Delhi's streets

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Aam Aadmi Party workers on Wednesday fought pitched battles with Bharatiya Janata Party activists outside the saffron party headquarters in New Delhi hours after former Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal was detained briefly in Gujarat.

Scores of AAP workers stormed the BJP head office on Ashoka Road in the heart of the capital protesting against Kejriwal's detention in Radhanpur in North Gujarat where he has gone on a four-day visit to "inspect" development that has been claimed by Chief Minister Narendra Modi.

They shouted slogans against Modi saying he was "scared" by Kejriwal's visit and was using the police against him.

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Image: An AAP supporter shouts slogans as she shows a flag towards policemen during a protest outside the BJP headquarters
Photographs: Adnan Abidi/Reuters

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'Anarchist' Aadmi Protest on Delhi's streets

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Soon both sides were engaged in pelting of stones alleging that the other side started it.

The police sought to disperse the crowd by using water canons. Plastic chairs were also hurled from inside the BJP office on the crowds outside.

The scene outside the BJP office looked a veritable battle scene with activists of both sides pelting stones and other missiles at each other. At least five people from either side were injured, police said. An FIR will be filed in the case.

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Image: An AAP supporter shouts slogans outside the BJP headquarters
Photographs: Adnan Abidi/Reuters
Tags: BJP , FIR , Delhi

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'Anarchist' Aadmi Protest on Delhi's streets

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Nalin Kohli, a BJP office bearer, accused AAP leader Ashutosh, a candidate in Chandni Chowk Lok Sabha constituency, of engineering the trouble and demanded his arrest.

BJP Vice President Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi said, “The way AAP has displayed anarchy and violence on the day election has been declared in the country. They are trying to disturb and vitiate the peaceful atmosphere in the country which could affect the free, fair and peaceful conduct of polls, which is the hallmark of democracy.”

"It is the duty of the Election Commission to check that the party to whom it has given recognition recently is not ready to accept the constitution, democratic values, the law the land as well as the Model Code of Conduct.”

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Image: AAP supporters argue with a policeman during the protest
Photographs: Adnan Abidi/Reuters

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'Anarchist' Aadmi Protest on Delhi's streets

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But AAP leaders hit back saying it was the BJP activists who provoked violence.

"We cannot change the path of our caravan. What was the need to detain Kejriwal? Modi is scared of Kejriwal. Rahul Gandhi is in Aurangabad but he wasn't stopped. This rally was fixed days in advance," AAP leader Shazia Ilmi, who was among the protesters, said.

"What was the need to fire water cannons and throw stones at us? I was myself standing here. We were only shouting slogans against Modi," she said.

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Image: Police use water cannon to disperse AAP supporters
Photographs: Adnan Abidi/Reuters

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'Anarchist' Aadmi Protest on Delhi's streets

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Ashutosh was also critical of the police action. "We have been protesting peacefully. Congress and BJP are hand in gloves. All are scared of AAP."

As he embarked on his four-day tour to verify Modi's claims of providing water, power, education and healthcare to people of Gujarat, Kejriwal was taken to Radhanpur police station in north Gujarat and allowed to go after half an hour.

AAP's state convenor Sukhdev Patel claimed that Kejriwal was detained but police denied it saying they had only "briefed" Kejriwal on the model code of conduct which came into force on Wednesday with the declaration of poll schedule. 

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Image: AAP supporters shout slogans during the protest
Photographs: Adnan Abidi/Reuters

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Retaliation for Delhi attack, Kejriwal's car damaged

The windshield of the car carrying AAP leader Arvind Kejriwal was damaged when BJP workers attacked his convoy in retaliation to the protests by AAP workers in front of the BJP headquarters in Delhi.

The BJP activists and those accompanying Kejriwal in the cavalcade in Kharohi village of Kutch district clashed after the car windshield was broken.

AAP claims that when Kejriwal's convoy reached Kharohi, some BJP workers showed black flags.

"Using the sticks to which black flags were tied they attacked Kejriwal's car when he had gone there to take a stock of problems people were facing due to a breach in Narmada canal in the area," AAP Gujarat convener Sukhdev Patel said. 


Image: AAP supporters shout slogans during the protest outside the BJP headquarters
Photographs: Adnan Abidi/Reuters

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