Chaos prevailed for a while near the venue of Arvind Kejriwal’s rally at Azadpur Mandi here when a group of people claiming to be BJP supporters, waved black flags and raised anti-AAP slogans over the party’s demand for rollback of the demonetization decision.
The protesters, about 50 in number, also raised placards in support of the demonetization move and alleged that the AAP was trying to “mislead” people on the issue. As they raised slogans, supporters of AAP accused them of obstructing the rally and police then swung into action. The protesters were later detained at Alipur Police Station, a senior police official said.
Neelam Budhiraj , BJP councillor from Adarsh Nagar and a couple of other women workers of the party were also among the demonstrators, who were detained. “Kejriwal is trying to belittle the demonetization move of Modiji and, this rally is an attempt to mislead the people, so we have come here to protest,” she said. Few mediapersons also alleged that they faced problem entering the media section at the venue, as security volunteers “created fuss”.
The demonstrators, however, were detained before Kejriwal arrived at the venue, where he was later joined by West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee. The two leaders addressed a huge gathering of labourers, traders and other persons associated with Azadpur Mandi, Asia’s biggest market of vegetable and fruits.
Kejriwal and his West Bengal counterpart set a deadline of three days to the Modi government to roll back the demonetization decision, warning of “widespread unrest” if the current “chaos” continues.
Kejriwal and Banerjee singularly targeted the Prime Minister accusing him of unleashing “pain” on common man in the name of unearthing black money and “pretentious nationalism”.
“I came to Delhi to submit the memorandum to the President, on the demonetization issue. And, I wanted to meet people here and talk about the issue. Then, Kejriwalji told me about this rally, and, so I told him that I would also like to come and join him there,” she said.
Heavy security was in place for the event, with Delhi Police personnel, ITBP and CRPF and RAF jawans being deployed at the venue.