New Delhi, Aug 15:
Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal was on Saturday embroiled in yet another controversy when students who took part in the Independence Day ceremony, formed his name with placards instead of patriotic messages.
The incident at the Chhatrasal stadium led to strong reactions from the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), which termed it a “misuse” of the Independence Day celebrations.
In a statement, Delhi BJP president Satish Upadhyay condemned the Aam Aadmi Party government for politically misusing the Independence Day function and lowering the dignity and sanctity of the day.
Delhi BJP media in-charge Praveen Shankar Kapoor said: “Self-obsessed chief minister Arvind Kejriwal should immediately apologise to the nation. This is an insult of the sacrifice of the freedom fighters.”
Former Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) leader Yogendra Yadav called the act “embarrassing”, and tweeted: “AAP Delhi touches a new low. Embarrassing.”
Delhi Congress chief Ajay Maken termed it a matter of shame.
“I don’t believe it! It’s a shame!” Maken tweeted.
Reacting to the charges, government officials denied that it was done on instructions from the chief minister’s office.
They said the children also displayed other messages such as “Welcome” and “Thank You”.
Later, the government released a statement saying: “Delhi government condemns attempts to drag it into an unnecessary controversy on Independence Day, particularly when it had nothing to do with the entire issue.”
The government even released photographs of similar displays of the names of former chief minister Sheila Dikshit and Lt. Governor Najeeb Jung.
“These photographs speak for themselves and this direct and concrete evidence should put an end to undesirable speculation which was completely avoidable,” the statement said.