From the Delhi Assembly to the streets, BJP leaders in the national capital held protests demanding Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia’s resignation from the Cabinet while the Delhi government conducted a one-day special session of the Assembly.
The assembly session itself began with slogans being exchanged between BJP and AAP MLAs, with the latter entering the Vidhan Sabha with slogans of “20 khokha 20 khokha” alluding to allegations by AAP of BJP offering Rs 20 crore to its MLAs to switch sides. The eight BJP MLAs hit back with slogans of “dhoka dhoka”.
The session was adjourned for 10 minutes amidst this exchange of slogans.
By 11.40 am, the BJP MLAs had been expelled from the assembly for the whole day after party leader Ajay Mahawar was found to be live recording the session on his phone. While the session continued inside the assembly, the BJP MLAs protested outside with placards demanding Sisodia’s removal from the Cabinet, which stated: “Dismiss the corrupt ministers Manish Sisodia and Satyendar Jain.”
“We wanted to discuss the excise policy and the scam done by deputy CM Manish Sisodia… Where did they get money for election campaigning in Punjab, Goa, Gujarat. Instead of answering our questions, they removed us from the assembly for the whole day… They want to suppress the voice of the opposition… Sisodia has committed a scam worth Rs 1,000 crore in Delhi Excise Policy. Arrest Sisodia and dismiss him from the cabinet… Otherwise we will protest here at the Gandhi Statue,” alleged BJP MLA from Badarpur Ramvir Singh Bidhuri.
Later, in the afternoon, BJP leaders including party’s Delhi chief Adesh Gupta, MPs Parvesh Sahib Singh and Ramesh Bidhuri and former Union Minister Vijay Goel led workers in a protest near Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal’s residence, which escalated into police deploying water cannons to disperse them. A senior police officer stated that the water cannons were used as the crowd was not dispersing.
“We have many questions on their excise policy but they did not respond to any of them in the Assembly. They are running away from questions, they are running away from giving any answers on corruption. They called an Assembly session but it was just a ‘propaganda session’ for them,” said Gupta.
Newsletter | Click to get the day’s best explainers in your inbox
Northeast Delhi BJP MP Manoj Tiwari also criticised the AAP over their MLAs’ visit to Rajghat on Thursday, referring to them as “descendants of Goebbels”.
“Through his life, Mahatma Gandhi ji considered several things as evil. Among these were also alcohol and intoxicants. But those who have done a scam of thousands of crores on alcohol, those trying to make Delhi sharaab nagri, those trying to push Delhi’s children into alcoholism today go to Gandhi ji’s memorial in Rajghat and sit. Delhi remembers well that Arvind Kejriwal, you once stood on Anna’s (Hazare) shoulders for support and fooled Delhi. Now Delhi can never accept you standing on Gandhi ji’s shoulders for support. And today Delhi is asking that those who have created a record by lying continuously, those who have even crossed the seema of dishonesty, descendants of Goebbels – are they even worthy of going to Mahatma Gandhi’s memorial site?” he said.