AAP MLA Naresh Balyan was today arrested on charges of assault, its 13th lawmaker to land in Delhi Police’s net, triggering sharp reaction from the party.
Balyan, MLA from Uttam Nagar, was arrested on a day that also saw Deputy Chief Minister Manish and Okhla MLA Amanatullah Khan being questioned by Anti-Corruption Branch in separate cases and news about a non-bailable warrant being issued against Matiala legislator Gulab Singh surfaced.
“AAP MLA Balyan was arrested today in connection with a case of assault registered at Uttam Nagar police station last week,” said Dependra Pathak, joint commissioner of police (Southwest).
Balyan was called for questioning to the police station around 8.30 pm and was later arrested, said a senior police officer.
He added that Mahavir Fauji, an associate of Balyan, was also arrested.
“In such matters, it is essential to arrest the accused since we have to know the facts. It’s a bailable offence in which he has been arrested and he is likely to be given bail by late night,” said the officer.
Former AAP volunteer and president of Mohan Garden RWA Henry George had accused Balyan and his associate of trespassing his office and attacking him and issuing threat to his life in the afternoon in his complaint lodged with the police.
A case was registered against Balyan under Sections 323 (voluntarily causing hurt), 341 (wrongful restraint), 451 (assault) and 506 (criminal intimidation) of the IPC.
A cross FIR was registered against George on a complaint by Balyan’s associate.
The associate had accused George and his aides of abusing and assaulting the MLA and his supporters who were passing from the office of the accused. The case against George was registered under Sections 323, 341 and 506 of the IPC.
Seventeen AAP MLAs have been booked by the Delhi Police till now on various charges and 13 have been arrested. The Aam Aadmi Party has alleged political vendetta in the action against its lawmakers by Delhi Police, which comes under the Union Home Ministry.
AAP spokesperson Ashutosh termed the action against party MLAs as “dictatorship”.
“Modi’s dictatorship-one day- Dy CM interrogated by ACB, AAP Gujarat in charge Gulab Singh issued NBW, MLA Naresh Balyan arrested,” he tweeted.
(With PTI inputs)