Arvind Kejriwal-led Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) on Thursday slammed Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), saying former Jharkhand chief minister and JMM chief Hemant Soren’s arrest by the ED shows the BJP government’s “anti-tribal” mindset and is an attempt to attack the opposition ahead of the Lok Sabha elections.
Soren, the executive president of the Jharkhand Mukti Morcha (JMM) — a member of the opposition I.N.D.I.A bloc — was arrested by the Enforcement Directorate (ED) on Wednesday night after more than seven hours of questioning. He is an accused in a money laundering case related to alleged land fraud.
“Hemant Soren’s arrest is an attempt by the BJP-led Central government to attack the opposition before the Lok Sabha elections. I am sure that many more opposition leaders will get arrested in the next one month…,” Delhi Minister and Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) leader Atishi said on ‘X’.
Another AAP leader Saurabh Bharadwaj also alleged that leaders who do not bow before the BJP are put behind bars.
“Those whom the BJP called corrupt have become chief ministers, deputy chief ministers and ministers in BJP governments. Himanta Biswa Sarma, Ajit Pawar, Narayan Rane, Suvendu Adhikari, Chhagan Bhujbal, Pema Khandu,” said the leader of the AAP, which is part of the bloc formed to taken on the BJP in the general elections.
“Those who do not bow cannot be suppressed and are not scared,” Bharadwaj said in a post on ‘X’ in Hindi.
AAP chief national spokesperson Priyanka Kakkar on ‘X’ said by getting Soren arrested, the BJP has shown its “anti-tribal” mindset”.
“By arresting a popular tribal chief minister of the country in a wrong case, the BJP has once again set an example of its own anti-tribal mentality,” she said.
“This arrest, three months before the elections, clearly shows that BJP is scared of the INDIA bloc. It wants to win the elections by keeping the vocal voices of the opposition in jail,” Kakkar said.
The ED has so far arrested 14 people in the case, including 2011-batch IAS officer Chhavi Ranjan who had served as the director of the state’s Social Welfare Department and deputy commissioner of Ranchi.
(With PTI inputs)