New Delhi, July 23 :
The Delhi High Court Wednesday issued notice to the central and city governments on a plea seeking direction to grant sanction to prosecute former chief minister Arvind Kejriwal and ex-minister Somnath Bharti in a criminal case.
Justice Vibhu Bakhru asked the governments to file their responses by Nov 19 on a plea filed by Ajay Gautam, who had earlier filed a criminal complaint case against Kejriwal and Bharti in a trial court.
Gautam, a teacher, filed a criminal complaint against “anarchy” created by Kejriwal and former law minister Bharti in January under the garb of a protest for suspension of certain police officials.
He said several Metro stations and roads were closed to the public due to the protest by Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) leaders, causing inconvenience to people.
In his plea, Gautam said the high court in March, while deciding his plea on the same issue, had asked him to file a criminal complaint against them.
He later filed a criminal complaint against them in a trial court which asked Gautam to take permission first from the government to prosecute Kejriwal and Bharti.
In April, he filed an application before Lt. Governor Najeeb Jung.
A month later, Gautam also filed a Right to Information (RTI) application requesting the Lt. Governor’s office to update the status of his application.
The plea said that on June 10, the Lt. Governor’s office replied that his application had been forwarded to the home department for necessary action.
The petition also said that after getting the reply, Gautam wrote a letter to the principal secretary for a decision on his application but no action was initiated against Kejriwal and Bharti.
During his tenure as chief minister, Kejriwal with all his ministers as well as hundreds of AAP workers sat on a protest outside Rail Bhavan to press their demand for suspension and transfer of some police officials who they claimed had refused to do their jobs.
The officials were already facing judicial inquiry in the same matter, the plea said.
“The state government (Kejriwal’s government) had demanded that all of them must be suspended without inquiry and due to this demand and protest Delhi Police closed all areas of India Gate and many roads were barricaded and four Metro stations were closed.”
It said this type of “hooliganism” – blocking of public roads, Metro stations by political executive and members of the ruling political party – should not be allowed to be continued in a civilised society under a democratic set up in the name of agitation.
Gautam said the public suffered due to the protest. He contended that he was not able to go to his destination as a result.