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Arvind Kejriwal Attacked With Chilli Powder in Secretariat, AAP Says Delhi Police Colluding With BJP

The attacker, identified as Naraina resident Anil Sharma, has been taken into police custody.


Updated:November 20, 2018, 5:33 PM IST
Arvind Kejriwal Attacked With Chilli Powder in Secretariat, AAP Says Delhi Police Colluding With BJP
Sachet of chilli powder thrown at Kejriwal. The attacker in police custody (R). (News18 Photo)

New Delhi: A man hurled chilli powder at Delhi chief minister Arvind Kejriwal outside his office in the Delhi Secretariat on Tuesday, an attack the Aam Aadmi Party described as "politically motivated".

The man, Anil Kumar, who has been detained, was targeting the chief minister's eyes, officials said, but he saved by the spectacles, officials said. The spectacles broke in the chaos that ensued but his eyes seemed to have been spared any damage, they added.

Kumar, whose Aadhaar card has been recovered, brought the chilli powder to the secretariat in packets of chewing tobacco, they said.

After throwing red pepper powder on Kejriwal, Kumar threatened to shoot him after he comes out of jail, an official said. The attack took place outside the chief minister's chamber on the third floor when he was leaving for lunch.

The Aam Aadmi Party condemned the attack, saying it was a “serious security lapse” from the Delhi police. In a tweet, the party said “even the Chief Minister is not safe in Delhi.”

Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia alleged that the BJP was colluding with Delhi Police to hatch a conspiracy to attack the chief minister. Sisodia said the party and its members are not going to be cowed by the BJP's "petty" tactics.

"The attack surprisingly took place at a high security area. Recently, BJP Delhi chief Manoj Tiwari reached near stage during the inauguration of Signature Bridge. BJP in collusion with Delhi Police is hatching a conspiracy to attack the chief minister," Sisodia told reporters.

Leader of the BJP's Delhi unit Manoj Tiwari condemned the attack and called for a "high-level" probe. The Delhi BJP chief said such incidents "cannot be tolerated or justified by anybody". "This calls for a high-level probe," Tiwari said.

AAP's national spokesperson Raghav Chadha said he was behind the CM when the attack took place and questioned the security lapse, wondering what would have happened if the weapon was a more dangerous one.

“While today just the CM's glasses fell to the floor and broke, an unacceptable security lapse nonetheless. Imagine if attacker were to be wielding a more dangerous weapon. Who were to have prevented a tragedy from occurring?” he asked.

Kejriwal, chief of the Aam Aadmi Party, has in the past been attacked with ink and slapped while campaigning for elections.

Officials close to Kejriwal accused the Delhi Police of being lax in providing him security and alleged that this was the third attempt to harm him in less than a month.

AAP lawmaker Saurabh Bhardwaj said the BJP was protecting lumpen elements behind the attacks on CM, and said even on Dussehra this year, an unidentified man got inside one of the rooms at the CM residence, which too, is protected by Delhi Police.

“There was also an attempt to attack the CM during the inauguration of Signature Bridge. The BJP is behind the attack and the accused are being aided by the Modi government," Bhardwaj alleged.

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