Kejriwal claimed the BJP, which controls three municipal corporations in the capital (East, North and South), refused to discuss the issue with him, thus forcing him to approach the Supreme Court to seek relief. A BJP delegation led by Delhi unit president Manoj Tiwari walked out of the CM’s residence ahead of a meeting, alleging that the AAP government wanted to “divert” the issue.
“The Delhi government will approach the SC seeking a temporary ban on sealing drive. BJP has refused to speak to me, so I am forced to knock on the doors of the apex court,” the Delhi CM said. Kejriwal said a petition had already been drafted and it was being scrutinised by government lawyers.
Tiwari said the BJP delegation walked out of the meeting since Kejriwal had converted it into a “public rally”. “We sensed their dangerous mood and felt that he was not interested in finding a solution to the problem,” PTI quoted him as saying.
The corporations have been carrying out sealing drives since December last year, with thousands of shops being sealed on the instructions of the Supreme Court-appointed monitoring committee. The shops were sealed for non-payment of conversion charges, encroachment and illegal construction. Also, 351 roads have been sealed and the corporations have demanded they be notified as commercial or mixed-land use by the Delhi government.
The sealing drive has affected lakhs of traders, Kejriwal claimed and put the blame on Lieutenant Governor (LG) Anil Baijal for staying mum on the issue. Kejriwal said if the Delhi government, LG and the Centre held a meeting together, the matter could be solved in 24 hours. “The has been no action from the LG. The traders are upset. LG, BJP and Centre can solve the issue in 24 hours if they hold a meeting,” the AAP’s national convenor said.
Meanwhile, Leader of Opposition in Delhi Assembly Vijender Gupta filed a police complaint against AAP MLAs, alleging that they had engaged in a scuffle with BJP workers during the meeting. The LG has been silent on the issue except saying that all possible solutions were being explored to overcome the crisis. The issue snowballed after members of AAP and the Delhi Police faced off at Sansad Marg on Monday during a protest against the sealing drive. AAP members alleged that the police, without warning, ordered a lathi charge as they were marching towards Parliament.
(Source: The Indian Express)