NEW DELHI (TIP):
Arvind Kejriwal, who is in Gujarat, has violated the election code of conduct by not getting prior police permission for his road-show, the Election Commission said, adding a new installment to the drama that has surrounded his tour. Kejriwal says he is in Gujarat to check on the claims of uber-development brandished by Narendra Modi, the BJP”s candidate for prime minister, who has governed the state since 2001. So far, Kejriwal says, he has seen no evidence of the clean and effective governance that Modi offers as his main qualification for running the country. Kejriwal, the 45-year-old leader of the Aam Aadmi Party or AAP, was detained briefly at a police station in the western town of Radhanpur yesterday where he was asked to explain why he had not got clearances for his large convoy.
Once elections are called, the code of conduct applies and any political procession requires police sanction. “If you go strictly by law, Kejriwal violated the model code of conduct. The whole world knew that the code was in place after the announcement of the national election dates in the morning,” Election Commissioner HS aid. Kejriwal’s detention triggered egregious street battles in Delhi and Lucknow where his party workers gathered at BJP offices to protest against what they described as their leader’s harassment in Gujarat.
Nearly 30 people were injured in clashes between the rival parties in Delhi; the police has blamed AAP for instigating the violence, an accusation Mr Kejriwal’s colleagues firmly reject. (Day 1 of Gujarat road-show bumpy for Arvind Kejriwal) As Kejriwal drove through the region of Bhuj, he was escorted by 10 police cars, a consequence of an attack last night on his convoy which left the windshield of his car shattered. Though Mr Kejriwal refused to press charges, the Gujarat police says it has filed a case and formed two teams to identify and locate the vandals. So far, nobody has been arrested.