At least 65 Aam Aadmi Party leaders, including their state president Gopal Italia, were granted bail by a court in Gandhinagar noon after they spent 10 days in jail for protesting outside BJP headquarters in Gandhinagar. Among those jailed are also 10 college students.

The court has granted bail to the 65 AAP leaders who have been at Sabarmati Central Jail since December 20. We are yet to receive the copy of the bail order and I believe by evening, they may be released, Pranav Thakkar, the legal counsel of AAP Gujarat, said.

The members, who have been lodged at the Sabarmati Central Prison, are expected to be released in the evening. All of those arrested face charges under22 Sections of the Indian Penal Code, including criminal conspiracy, and sections of the Epidemic Diseases Act and Prevention of Damage to Public Property Act.

Advertisements

A total of 93 people were arrested, of which the 28 women accused have already obtained conditional bail. Those arrested were among about 500 supporters of AAP who staged a protest outside the Shree Kamalam office of the BJP in Gandhinagar. They demanded the removal of Asit Vora, BJP leader and chairman of Gujarat Subordinate Service Selection Board (GSSSB), which conducted the exam to recruit head clerks.

The written exam was held on December 12, with 88,000 aspirants appearing for 186 vacancies. AAP alleged that the question paper was leaked and sold in advance for Rs 8-12 lakh. While the government later annulled the exam and rescheduled it for March 2022, the police arrested 18 accused in the racket. The protest had led to a clash between AAP and BJP workers following which the police resorted to a lathicharge to disperse the protesters.

Subsequently, based on the complaint of a woman BJP worker, the Gandhinagar Police lodged an FIR against AAP state president Gopal Italia, women’s wing president Gauri Desai, youth wing president Nikhil Savani, senior leaders Isudan Gadhvi and Hasmukh Patel, and 500 unknown persons. The police, subsequently, had arrested 93 members.

Advertisements