Delhi CM Arvind Kejriwal, deputy Manish Sisodia charged for assault on chief secy

New Delhi: The Delhi Police charged chief minister Arvind Kejriwal and his deputy Manish Sisodia with criminal conspiracy in an alleged assault on chief secretary Anshu Prakash by Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) legislators in the presence of the two leaders in February.

Kejriwal and Sisodia were charged with planning the conspiracy to assault Prakash, Delhi government’s top civil servant, by calling him to the chief minister’s residence for a late night meeting on February 19, where Kejriwal’s former advisor VK Jain was also present.

According to a police report, 11 AAP MLAs were charged with assault. The legislators are Amanatullah Khan, Prakash Jarwal, Nitin Tyagi, Rituraj Govind, Sanjeev Jha, Ajay Dutt, Rajesh Rishi, Rajesh Gupta, Madan Lal, Parveen Kumar, and Dinesh Mohania.

In his complaint, the chief secretary said, Kejriwal asked him to explain the delay in releasing a three-year anniversary TV campaign.

Soon, the lawmakers shouted at him and threatened him. “One MLA, whom I can identify, threatened that I will be confined in the room for the entire night unless I agree to release the TV campaign,” he said.

Amanatullah Khan and Prakash Jarwal, who flanked the bureaucrat, “started hitting and assaulting me and hit several blows with fists on my head and temple,” he said.

Amantullah Khan and Prakash Jarwal were later arrested in the case, VK Jain was questioned by the police.

Kejriwal and his ministers had dismissed the allegations and cited the CCTV footage from the house as proof that the bureaucrat had safely left the residence. A forensic report later confirmed that the time counters on the CCTV cameras were nearly 40 minutes behind the actual time.

The alleged attack had led to a long-drawn, bitter face-off between the bureaucrats and the ministers. A medical report that said Prakash had swollen ears and cheeks and a bruise on his lips more than 24 hours after the assault is also part of police’s evidence, sources said.

The matter was resolved after Kejriwal’s sit-in protest at the house of Lieutenant Governor Anil Baijal in June.

The court will consider the police chargesheet on August 25.