Delhi Lt Governor Najeeb Jung and the Arvind Kejriwal government on Friday fought over the issue of withdrawal of criminal cases against Aam Aadmi Party leaders, including Kejriwal.
The LG office accused the AAP government of “insisting” he withdrew 24 criminal cases pending against AAP leaders, a charge the government rubbished.
The LG office denied the government’s allegation pertaining to former Haryana chief minister Om Prakash Chautala’s parole plea.
“On September 11, Delhi Home Minister Satyendra Jain brought a file containing the details of criminal cases pending against the Delhi chief minister and other senior AAP leaders.
“Jain asked Jung to clear the file by withdrawing the 24 cases against AAP leaders pending in various Delhi courts,” the statement from Jung’s office said.
“The LG will look into a fresh application for (former Haryana chief minister Om Prakash) Chautala’s parole on medical grounds and will take decision accordingly,” it said.
Chautala is currently lodged in Tihar Jail here after his conviction in Haryana teachers’ recruitment case.
“The Delhi government is lying about mounting pressure on its minister (Jain) regarding considering Chautala parole,” Jung’s office said.
“The government is trying to work beyond their constitutional framework. They are trying to politicise the matter and the allegation is purely a figment of imagination. As per the rules, the LG is the ultimate authority for granting parole,” it said.
The Delhi government,for its part, rubbished the charge by Jung’s office that it wanted cases against Aam Aadmi Party leaders to be dropped.
In an official statement, the Kejriwal government accused the LG office of “misleading the public by hiding some important facts” regarding the matter.
“The LG office alleged that (Delhi) Home Minister Satyendra Jain wanted withdrawal of cases registered against some leaders of his party. No minister is involved in this process. Therefore, the LG office has erred in making this allegation,” the government said.
“It is regrettable that the LG office has tried to mislead by not placing the entire facts that compoundable cases against political leaders/workers are never withdrawn by executive orders but through a screening committee,” the statement added.
The screening committee comprises principal secretaries of the home and law departments, joint commissioner of police (law and order) and director of prosecution.
The government said that the prominent names (of leaders) from the Congress and the Bharatiya Janata Party whose cases were recommended for withdrawal of prosecution include Mukesh Sharma, Vijay Goel, Parvesh Verma, Vijendra Gupta, Harshvardhan, Jagdish Mukhi and Ramesh Bidhuri.
“The LG office focused only on the names of AAP (leaders). Therefore, it has made an unsuccessful attempt to divert the attention from the real issue of Om Prakash Chautala’s parole,” the statement said.