Okhla Shops Shut To Protest AAP MLA's Arrest; Kejriwal Draws Flak for Silence

He had also participated in protests over a demolition drive scheduled for 9 May at Delhi's Shaheen Bagh.

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Edited By :Padmashree Pande

A day after Aam Aadmi Party MLA, Amanatullah Khan, was arrested for protesting against an anti-encroachment drive being conducted in South Delhi's Madanpur Khadar area, several shops in Okhla constituency from where he is elected, remained shut to mark their protest over the police action.

Notably, the ruling AAP government in Delhi has refrained from remarking on the arrest of its leader, drawing criticism for its silence.

"Amanatullah Khan has been sent behind the bars for raising the voice of the public. I request the people of Okhla to keep their shops closed from 9 am to 5 pm tomorrow in protest against the arrest so that we can tell the oppressive BJP government that people are standing with their MLAs," a tweet from Khan's account, signed by his wife, Shafia, had said.

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    Shops in Okhla were kept shut on Friday after MLA Amanatullah Khan's arrest.

    (Photo: Accessed by The Quint)

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    (Photo: Accessed by The Quint)

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    (Photo: Accessed by The Quint)

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    (Photo: Accessed by The Quint)

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    (Photo: Accessed by The Quint)


Khan, who had intervened in South Delhi Municipal Corporation's anti-encroachment drive, had been arrested along with five others on Thursday for "rioting and obstructing public servants in discharge of duty," as per the Delhi police.

The AAP MLA had claimed that there was not a single encroachment in the Madanpur Khadar area where the drive was being conducted. He was arrested after incidents of stone-pelting were reported during protests over the bulldozing.

'Silence of Kejriwal, AAP Astonishing': Congress, Others Note

Senior Congress leader Digvijay Singh on Friday said that the AAP's silence on Khan's arrest was "astonishing".

"The silence of the AAP leader and his party is astonishing. Kejriwal ji supported BJP on the subject of CAA and NRC. While Amanatullah Khan openly opposed it."

While AAP's Rajya Sabha MP Sanjay Singh has condemned the BJP's "dictatorship" under which Khan was arrested, Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal and representatives of the Delhi government have not commented on the issue.

In addition to Digvijaya Singh, several others on Twitter also expressed their surprise over the AAP's non-reaction.


"The lathi charge by the police on the people opposing the BJP's 'bulldozer system' is unconstitutional. We are against the anti-people policies of the BJP, I will always raise the voice of the rights of the people, no matter how many times I have to go to jail for this," MLA Khan had said on Thursday, before his arrest.

He had also participated in protests over a demolition drive scheduled for 9 May at Delhi's Shaheen Bagh, which was not conducted after locals and party workers demonstrated against the MCD's bulldozers.

Meanwhile, Delhi Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia on Friday said that the BJP plans to demolish the homes of 70 percent of the city's population. Sisodia said that he has written to Union Home Minister Amit Shah urging him to stop the recent spate of demolitions in the national capital during the anti-encroachment drives under the BJP-ruled civic body.

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Topics:  Aam Aadmi Party   AAP   Delhi 

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