Arrest of Delhi CM Arvind Kejriwal: Condemn Modi Govt's Unbridled Emergency & Conspiracy to Stifle Opposition

Arrest of Delhi CM Arvind Kejriwal: Modi Regime's Unbridled Emergency & Conspiracy to Stifle Opposition

Press Statement | CPIML Liberation | New Delhi, 21 March 2024

Kejriwal, Hemant Soren, Manish Sisodia, Sanjay Singh and other Opposition Leaders Must be Immediately Released!

The Communist Party of India Marxist-Leninist (CPIML) strongly condemns the arrest of Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal by the Enforcement Directorate (ED) in the alleged excise scam. This marks another chapter of the Modi regime's unbridled emergency and the conspiracy to stifle opposition and democratic voices in the country.

Arvind Kejriwal is the second elected Chief Minister after Hemant Soren of Jharkhand who has been arrested under politically motivated allegations which are far from being proved. In Delhi, other leading Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) leaders – Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia and Member of Parliament Sanjay Singh – have also been arrested in the recent past under the same allegation as the Chief Minister. As is the norm these days, none of them have got bail and remain in jail despite no charge-sheet or trial in sight.

Since 2014, when Modi came to power, around 95 percent of the ED related cases have been against opposition leaders. Clearly, this pattern reflects the politics of vengeance by unleashing ED against those who speak against the Modi regime's anti-people policies.

Over the last few years, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) led union government has brazenly used the federal investigative agencies like the ED and the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) to harass and intimidate opposition leaders across the country. Leaders of non-BJP state governments have been key targets. Recently, bank accounts of the Indian National Congress have been frozen.

Arvind Kejriwal’s arrest comes at a time when the BJP government is under the scanner for its use of electoral bonds to acquire vast amounts of wealth from big corporations. The Supreme Court recently declared these bonds unconstitutional and their details have been recently made public. Kejriwal’s arrest seems like a desperate but draconian method to try and flip the narrative.

The arrests, intimidation and harassment of the opposition in the weeks preceding the Lok Sabha elections show how little the government cares about democratic processes. Given the scale of unrest in the country due to discriminatory and undemocratic laws, state-sponsored majoritarian violence, soaring inequality and unemployment, and unprecedented accumulation of wealth and power by big corporations, the government fears that peoples’ anger may upset their applecart in the elections. Hence, it is leaving no stone unturned to eliminate any effective opposition.

CPIML demands that Arvind Kejriwal, Hemant Soren, Manish Sisodia, along with other opposition leaders, must be immediately released. CPIML appeals to all opposition parties to strengthen their unity in this difficult hour and with the support of the Indian people give the ruling party a fitting rebuff in the upcoming Lok Sabha elections.

Ravi Rai,
For CPIML Central Committee