New Delhi: In a high-voltage drama, a Delhi Police team took the custody of BJP leader Tajinder Pal Singh Bagga in Kurukshetra from the Punjab Police, who had arrested him from his home in the national capital on Friday morning.
The Punjab Police team was stopped in Kurukshetra’s Pipli, with a Haryana Police official saying they had received information that Bagga was ”forcibly” picked up from his residence.
A Delhi Police team reached Kurukshetra, took Bagga’s custody, and left for the national capital, a Kurukshetra police official said over the phone.
Pipli Sadar police station SHO Malkiat Singh said, ”The Delhi Police took him (Bagga) with them in view of an FIR registered in Delhi about his kidnapping.” Bagga could be seen flashing a victory sign as the Delhi Police team took him away.
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The Punjab government moved the High Court against the ”detention” of its team in Kurukshetra and subsequent developments that followed.
In a statement, the Punjab Police said Bagga was being taken to a state court for a hearing.
Last month, the Punjab Police had booked Bagga on charges of making provocative statements, promoting enmity, and criminal intimidation. The case was registered on a complaint of AAP leader Sunny Ahluwalia, a resident of Mohali.
The Delhi Police registered a case of kidnapping based on a complaint by Bagga’s father that some people came to his house in Delhi’s Janakpuri around 8 am and took away his son.
They claimed that the local police were not informed before Bagga was arrested from his residence, a charge denied by the Punjab Police, who said their Delhi counterparts did not cooperate.
Senior police officials of Punjab and Haryana had reached the spot where the Punjab Police team was stopped.
Mohali SSP Vivek Sheel Soni also shot off a letter to his Kurukshetra counterpart, saying the Haryana Police stopped Punjab cops returning from Delhi with the arrested BJP leader, tantamount to ”illegal detention”.
He in his letter referred to the FIR registered against Bagga last month and said five notices were sent to him to join the probe. ”But he did not appear before the investigating team,” the SSP said.
”In accordance with law, a police party was sent to arrest the accused. The said police party arrested the accused from his Delhi residence in the morning. It has come to my notice that the police party has been stopped by the Haryana Police on the Karnal-Kurukshetra highway,” the letter read.
”This tantamount to illegal detention and interference in the administration of the criminal justice system,” the Mohali SSP said.
The FIR against Bagga registered on April 1 referred to his remarks on March 30, when he was part of a BJP youth wing protest outside the Delhi chief minister’s residence.
The Delhi BJP spokesperson came under fire from AAP, which is ruling both Delhi and Punjab, for his tweet against Kejriwal over ”The Kashmir Files” movie.
Bagga’s arrest triggered a strong reaction from the BJP which accused the Punjab Police of ”abducting” the party spokesperson and alleged that AAP leader Arvind Kejriwal is pursuing vendetta through the state police.
Punjab BJP leader Tarun Chugh tweeted, ”The manner in which Kejriwal is misusing Punjab Police is condemnable.” ”They behaved inhumanly with Bagga and his father. But remember Kejriwal ji, your such acts cannot scare a true Sikh,” he said.
Delhi BJP chief Adesh Gupta said a complaint has been lodged at the Janakpuri police station in the national capital over the Punjab Police allegedly beating up Bagga’s father.
”Sending 50-60 Punjab Police personnel to the house of the young BJP leader, forcibly lifting him and getting his elderly father beaten up is proof of the dictatorial mindset of Arvind Kejriwal,” he tweeted in Hindi.
BJP leader Manjinder Singh Sirsa alleged that a Sikh has been insulted despite Punjab having a Sikh chief minister in Bhagwant Mann.
Meanwhile, AAP claimed that Bagga was arrested from Delhi by the Punjab Police for trying to stoke communal tensions and violence in the border state and rejected the BJP’s charge of vendetta.
Though AAP chief spokesperson Saurabh Bharadwaj referred to the clashes in Patiala on April 29, the Punjab Police said it arrested the Delhi BJP spokesperson from his residence in the national capital in connection with a case registered in Mohali on April 1.
Defending the Punjab Police action, Bharadwaj told reporters in Delhi that a case was lodged against Bagga after he through his social media posts ”tried to create communal tensions and incite violence in the state”.
”Because of such statements, the Punjab Police lodged an FIR and now arrested Bagga. His statements were communal in nature. A lot of BJP-linked people were instigating violence in Patiala,” Bhardwaj alleged.