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EC Cracks Whip on Delhi Police Officer Who Shared Details Linking Shaheen Bagh Shooter With AAP

Representative image.

Representative image.

Taking a strong view of DCP Rajesh Deo sharing with the media details of the investigation that linked Shaheen Bagh shooter Kapil Baisala to the AAP, the poll body barred him from election duty.

New Delhi: The Election Commission on Wednesday said the statements made by Delhi Police Crime Branch official Rajesh Deo referring to the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) in connection with the Shaheen Bagh shooter were "totally uncalled for".

Taking a strong view of Deputy Commissioner of Police Deo sharing with the media details of the investigation that linked Shaheen Bagh shooter Kapil Baisala to the AAP, the poll body barred him from election duty. The EC directed the Delhi Police not to assign him any poll-related work, saying his conduct has "consequences" on holding "free and fair elections".

The EC said that having considered the matter in its entirety, it has issued a warning to Deo communicating its displeasure on his conduct.

The commission has asked the Delhi Police to file a compliance report by 6 pm on Thursday.

Deo on Tuesday told reporters that Baisala, who had opened fired at Shaheen Bagh on Saturday, was an AAP member. This prompted Delhi's ruling party to approach the poll body against the police officer.

Baisala, 25, was arrested on February 1 for firing in the air at Shaheen Bagh, which has been at the centre of protests in the national capital against the Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA).

The Crime Branch, which is investigating the case, found images on Baisala's phone showing him with AAP leaders Atishi and Sanjay Singh, Deo had said.

But the Delhi Police's claims were refuted by Baisala's family. His uncle, Fatesh Singh, claimed he had no idea where the photographs came from.

Baisala's father, Gaje Singh, on Wednesday claimed his son has no association with AAP.

The images led to a war of words between the ruling AAP and the BJP — both parties have been locked in a heated battle ahead of polling on Saturday.

Singh, who was purportedly seen in a photograph with the shooter, accused the BJP and Union Home Minister Amit Shah of a "conspiracy" and of "indulging in dirty politics". The party on Wednesday filed a complaint with the EC.

BJP President JP Nadda, meanwhile, said this had exposed the dirty face of the party and its chief Arvind Kejriwal who were playing with the country's security.

Union minister Prakash Javadekar alleged that "their (AAP's) designs are very clear from the beginning and they are trying every trick".

The party has also approached the EC, accusing the AAP of conspiring to cause a "riot-like" situation to obstruct the Assembly polls. It has urged the poll panel to take legal action against the regional party leaders in the wake of recent incidents, including firing at Shaheen Bagh.


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