New Delhi [India], Nov. 2 : For the second time today, Congress vice president Rahul Gandhi was detained after he met the family of ex-serviceman Ram Kishan Grewal, who allegedly committed suicide over the delay in implementation of the One Rank, One Pension (OROP).
Earlier today, Rahul was stopped close to the gates of the Ram Manohar Lohia Hospital and then taken to the Mandir Marg Police station.
A political storm has erupted over the development, as parties are making a beeline to meet the victims' family and are facing massive resistance from the Delhi Police, who are carting away the leaders in droves.
Issuing a statement in its defence, the Delhi Police asserted that they were reduced to detaining political leaders as they had to take law and order into consideration.
"During protest by Political parties at RML Hospital today, none has been arrested. When leaders along with the crowd started gathering at RML and Medical services got severely affected and orderliness deteriorated, the police requested them to move away.
Despite several requests when they didn't move and refused, the leaders and protesting followers were removed to Police stations and detained.
All concerned are requested to help Delhi Police in maintaining peace and orderliness," the statement added.
Besides Rahul, Congress leader Jyotirao Scindia has also been carted away by the Police while several Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) leaders are protesting outside the Parliament Street Police Station here, where Delhi Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia is being held.
Meanwhile, Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal was also detained at Lady Harding hospital, while he was leaving to meet Grewal's son.
Expressing displeasure at the detention of Congress and AAP leaders, the Trinamool Congress stated that its representative is on his way to the national capital to chime in the developments.
Taking to Twitter, West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee said it was very sad that a former jawan committed suicide, adding that it was unfortunate that Congress vice president Rahul Gandhi and Delhi Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia were stopped from visiting the bereaved family.
"They should be allowed. Our representative is on his way to Delhi," she said. Rahul Gandhi, who was detained today after he tried to meet the kin of Grewal, lashed out at the Delhi Police for arresting the former jawan's family besides himself.
"You have arrested the son of an army veteran. Why have you done that? Aren't you ashamed? What kind of work are you doing?," Rahul can be seen saying to the cops in the footage from his detention inside Mandir Marg Police station.
Expressing his ire over not being allowed to meet the Grewal, Rahul took a dig at Prime Minister Narendra Modi over this bizarre development.
"Let's see how long I have to wait here. I am certain that I will talk to the family. This is a strange behaviour. This is Modi's ji's country," he told ANI after being denied permission to visit the Hospital. However, Special Commissioner Mukesh Kumar Meena told the media here that Rahul Gandhi has been detained for trying to enter the hospital despite being advised otherwise.
"It is a hospital and not a place for demonstration. Rahul Gandhi detained at Mandir Marg Police Station for 'disruption of duty'. Democracy doesn't mean creating obstruction. Leaders must also understand that hospital is not the place to hold any demonstrations," he added. Delhi deputy chief minister Manish Sisodia was also 'forcibly removed' from the hospital premises after he went to meet the grieving family.
He later tweeted, "I had gone to the hospital to meet the family of the ex-serviceman, not to launch a dharna.
What mistake have I done?" Taking to Twitter, Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal said, "Manish Sisodia detained? He had gone to meet family of deceased Ram Kishan ji.
He is elected Dy CM. Whats wrong wid u Modiji? So insecure?" Grewal consumed poison last afternoon. However, the cause behind Grewal's suicide is yet to be ascertained. Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar has sought details of the incident from the department of ex-servicemen welfare.
"Saddened by the death of subedar Ram Kishen Grewal. I express my heartfelt condolences. I have asked officials to provide me with details," Parrikar tweeted..