NEW DELHI: The face-off between the AAP government and Delhi Police turned into a full-blown conflict on Tuesday with the arrest of Law Minister Jitendra Singh Tomar on charges of cheating and forgery in obtaining his law and graduation degrees. Tomar, who was sent to four-day police custody after
Metropolitan Magistrate Navneet Buddhiraja allowed the police to question him, later resigned from his post.
The Delhi Police had sought his five days remand as they wanted to interrogate him in connection with an FIR lodged at the Hauz Khas police station. Counsel for the police contended before the court that Tomar was an influential person and may tamper with the evidence. Tomar’s counsel H S Phoolka opposed the remand application saying his documents were not false and he was arrested based on the FIR.
The arrest triggered a strong response by the AAP government which called it “political vendetta”. Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal called his entire Cabinet late in the night to discuss Tomar’s arrest. Police registered an FIR against Tomar early in the morning after two Joint Commissioners of Police personally checked the evidence and documents collected after more than a month-long investigation into a complaint filed by Punit Mittal, Honorary Secretary of Bar Council of Delhi, on May 5.
The police served a notice to Tomar at 6 am to join the investigation, sought permission from the Lieutenant Governor and even faxed a letter about the development to Assembly Speaker Ram Niwas Goel. Tomar was picked up near his office at Shakurpur at 10 am and was brought to the Hauz Khas
police station. The police allowed him to use his cellphone and on the way, he spoke to senior leaders Sanjay Singh and Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia. However, he was later shifted to the Anti Auto Theft Squad police station in Vasant Vihar. The entire area was heavily barricaded and a large contingent of police was deployed.
Immediately, AAP leaders Kumar Vishwas and Ashutosh along with hundreds of supporters protested outside the police station.