India opposition protests in capital over Kejriwal’s arrest before election


Thousands of supporters and top leaders of India’s opposition alliance have gathered in the nation’s capital to protest the arrest of a senior colleague before of the general election, calling for an end to “autocracy.”

The chief minister of Delhi and a pivotal figure in the opposition coalition that opposed Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Arvind Kejriwal, was detained and imprisoned earlier in March in relation to an ongoing corruption investigation.

Kejriwal’s administration is charged with accepting bribes in exchange for granting private businesses liquor licenses. Kejriwal’s custody was prolonged by a judge on Thursday till April 1.

India opposition protests in capital over Kejriwal’s arrest before election

Kejriwal, 55, disputes the allegations. The liquor policy case, according to his Aam Aadmi Party (AAP), is politically driven and manufactured.

After apprehending Kejriwal, the Enforcement Directorate (ED), the primary financial investigation agency in India, began looking into the finances of at least four other state chief ministers and their families.

Nearly all of the inquiries center on political rivals of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), which is led by Modi. The eastern state of Jharkhand’s chief minister, Hemant Soren, was detained in January on suspicion of corruption.

“bringing the nation to its knees”
At the event on Sunday were a few of the leaders of the two dozen political parties that make up the Indian National Developmental Inclusive Alliance, the opposition alliance in INDIA.The leader of the Shiv Sena party and a former chief minister of Maharashtra state, Uddhav Thackeray, told the flag-waving audience, “The country is headed towards autocracy,” with many of them holding up posters depicting Kejriwal in jail with a phalanx of police officials observing.

Key India opposition leader sent to jail until April 15 in corruption case

Thackeray said, “This one-man government is taking the country to ruin.”

Another well-known opposition figure from Bihar state, Tejashwi Yadav, called Modi’s BJP “egoistical.”

“This is our third rally, and I want to say that the public is supporting us no matter where we travel. We have united to preserve the constitution,” stated Yadav, who also mentioned that unemployment and inflation are the nation’s two main issues.

He declared, “We will fight this battle and win.”

In his speech, the Communist Party of India general secretary, D Raja, denounced Kejriwal’s detention.

He remarked, “Mr. Modi, you cannot take the people of India for granted.” “The government is targeting the opposition parties with the Enforcement Directorate, income tax, and all central agencies.”

India's opposition parties unite in protest over arrest of Modi critic  Kejriwal

Sunita, Kejriwal’s wife, read aloud a letter from her imprisoned husband. India’s populace supports Arvind Kejriwal. “He cannot be detained in prison indefinitely,” she continued.

The world’s greatest democratic exercise, a six-week parliamentary election that begins on April 19, will see over a billion Indians cast ballots to choose a new administration. June 1 is the deadline for the six-phase voting, and on June 4 the votes will be counted.

Modi’s forceful Hindu nationalist views resonate with the country’s majority faith, according to many observers, who regard his re-election as inevitable.

Despite Modi’s strong popularity, others accuse him of intimidating opposition leaders with the help of law enforcement. Before Kejriwal was arrested, all of the AAP’s key figures were already behind bars in connection with the liquor policy issue.

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