BJP jittery ahead of Lok Sabha polls: Political parties on Arvind Kejriwal’s arrest


NEW DELHI: Several political parties condemned Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal’s arrest by the ED on Thursday, claiming that it shows how ”jittery” the ruling BJP at the Centre is with less than a month to go for the Lok Sabha polls.

The opposition parties also accused the BJP of indulging in vendetta politics. Kejriwal was arrested by the Enforcement Directorate (ED) in an excise policy-linked money laundering case on Thursday evening, officials said.

Reacting to the development, Communist Party of India (Marxist) general secretary Sitaram Yechury claimed that the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and Prime Minister Narendra Modi are in ”panic” over their impending rejection by people in the Lok Sabha polls.

”Strongly condemn the arrest of Delhi CM, Shri Arvind Kejriwal by the ED. It’s the second sitting CM of the INDIA bloc to be arrested,” Yechury said in a post on X. ”Clearly, Modi and the BJP are in panic over people’s rejection in the ongoing elections,” he added.

The Left leader said Kejriwal’s arrest will only ”cement” people’s desire to defeat the BJP in the parliamentary polls. ”All opposition leaders who defected and joined the BJP are protected and patronised. They are the ‘Satya Harishchandras’! These arrests will only cement people’s desire to defeat BJP, defend democracy and Indian Constitution,” he said.

CPI general secretary D Raja claimed that the BJP’s ”desperation” before the general election is on full display.

”They know the hollowness of their claims of 400 seats and that’s why opposition is being targeted by abusing central agencies. The arrest of Delhi CM Arvind Kejriwal and the arrest of then Jharkhand CM Hemant Soren show how jittery the BJP is. This harassment is only intended to intimidate the opposition.

”People will give a befitting answer to this in elections by throwing BJP out of power,” Raja said in a post on X.

The Mamata Banerjee-led Trinamool Congress (TMC) questioned the arrest at a time when the Model Code of Conduct (MCC) is in place. ”The election process has begun. And now this! Chiefs of political parties, CMs, political leaders, election agents, workers, every opponent being harassed and arrested like this. What will be the fate of our precious democracy,” the TMC’s Parliamentary Party leader in the Rajya Sabha Derek O’Brien said in a post on X.

”Let us all save democracy from impending disaster,” he added.

O’Brien condemned Kejriwal’s arrest and said the Election Commission (EC) and the Supreme Court should take action in the matter.

”We vehemently condemn the arrest of Arvind Kejriwal, an elected CM, especially when EC is in charge and MCC is in place. Earlier his administrative powers were snatched through an illegal ordinance,” he said.

”How can we expect fair elections in India if sitting CMs and prominent opposition leaders are arrested weeks before polls? If SC and ECI fail to act now, who will stand with people against BJP’s oppressive politics in future?” the TMC leader asked.

Samajwadi Party (SP) president Akhilesh Yadav said Kejriwal’s arrest ”will give birth to a new people’s revolution”.

”Those who are themselves imprisoned in the fear of defeat, what will they achieve by imprisoning someone else? BJP knows that it will not come to power again and because of this fear, it wants to remove the opposition leaders from the public by any means at the time of elections, arrest is just an excuse,” the former Uttar Pradesh chief minister said in a post on X.

People’s Democratic Party (PDP) president Mehbooba Mufti said Kejriwal’s arrest reeks of political vendetta and growing authoritarianism.

”The arbitrary arrest of yet another CM by ED reeks of political vendetta and growing authoritarianism,” the former Jammu and Kashmir chief minister said in a post on X.

She claimed that the arrest has exposed the BJP’s fears and accused the saffron party of trying to manipulate the Lok Sabha polls even before the voting.

”This cowardly act has exposed fears of the ruling party now resorting to desperate measures by manipulating elections even before they are held. History has shown that tyranny never prevails in the face of unified resistance. We will not be intimidated,” the former Union minister added.

Source: Press Trust  of India

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