Delhi BJP president Manoj Tiwari was detained along with party workers for alleged violation of lockdown norms on Monday after they gathered at Rajghat to protest against Arvind Kejriwal government's failure to contain COVID-19 cases in the national capital.
Tiwari denied that the protest was a "political" activity and added that police had detained him and his party workers fearing that the protest would lead to a large gathering.
"We had gathered at Rajghat to protest against Kejriwal government's failure to contain coronavirus in Delhi. Only a few party workers without carrying party flag were present there maintaining social distance norms," he said.
Police said nine persons, including Tiwari were detained from Rajghat for gathering in violation of lockdown norms.
"Nine people including Delhi BJP President Manoj Tiwari were detained for organising a protest in violation of lockdown norms. They were taken to Rajender Nagar police station and were released later," Deputy Commissioner of Police (Central) Sanjay Bhatia said.
Tiwari attacked the Delhi government and the Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal during the protest, alleging that they were trying to divert attention from the growing number of COVID-19 cases.
"Kejriwal government has failed to check coronavirus in Delhi and more than 1,000 fresh cases have come to light in the past four days. To divert attention from this, they have demanded Rs 5,000 crore from the Centre, sealed Delhi borders and raised the issue of patients from outside coming to Delhi to avail treatment," Tiwari said.
Besides Tiwari, former Delhi BJP president and Rohini MLA Vijender Gupta was also detained during the protest near the Rohini East Metro station.
The Union Home Ministry in its guidelines for "Unlock-1" has clubbed political gatherings along with other prohibited activities till June 30.
Several senior leaders, including national vice presidents Shyam Jaju and Dushyant Gautam, Lok Sabha MPs Parvesh Verma and Ramesh Bidhuri, also led protests in different parts of the city.
Delhi BJP Yuva Morcha president Sunil Yadav, spokesperson Pravin Shankar Kapoor and Harish Khurana, media department head Ashok Goel also took part in the protest organised by the Delhi BJP.