JIH Vice President, Prof Salim Engineer voices grave concern over arrest of Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal

March 22, 2024

New Delhi: The Vice President of Jamaat-e-Islami Hind, Prof Salim Engineer has voiced concern over the arrest of Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal. In a statement to the media, the JIH Vice President said, “We are highly concerned over the arrest of Delhi CM by the Enforcement Directorate (ED). We express our strong disapproval of the vindictive misuse of central agencies to target the opposition. The timing of arrest clearly indicates its intentions; particularly with the approaching Lok Sabha elections. Arvind Kejriwal is the second opposition Chief Minister after Hemant Soren of Jharkhand to be put behind bars by the ED. There appears to be a clear pattern in this modus operandi. First, the political funding of the opposition is throttled. Second, the opposition’s top leadership is targeted by the ED. Third, if they come out on bail after being arrested, they are invited to join the ruling party. The whole process is completely unethical, unconstitutional, and autocratic. It is designed to intimidate and finish the opposition using federal investigative and law enforcement agencies. The idea appears to dilute the opposition to such a degree that there is virtually a one-party rule in the country. This poses a grave danger to our democracy and the country appears to be moving towards an autocracy.”

Prof Salim Engineer averred, “Jamaat-e-Islami Hind feels that this misuse of autonomous government institutions for political purposes weakens the people’s trust in the bureaucracy. It also becomes a source of corruption in government departments. We urge the government to shun the political use of bureaucracy and restore the former dignity and autonomy of these venerable government institutions. Strong opposition and freedom for constructive criticism of the government are an important necessity for a stable democracy. We are of the opinion that anybody who has committed a crime should be punished who ever he or she may be, but a person is innocent until convicted by the court. It is surprising that ED is not going to those who are in the ruling party or close to it. We hope the Delhi CM will get justice in the Supreme Court of India. It is a critical moment for the nation and democracy is in peril. We hope the people of India will remain strong and preserve the ideals and values of our Constitution.”

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