Delhi News

Gates come to Delhi CM’s colony amid protest worry

More than three months after nearly 200 protesters belonging to the BJP’s youth wing Bharatiya Janata Yuva Morcha (BYJM), along with Lok Sabha MP and BJYM national president Tejasvi Surya, broke through police barricades outside Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal’s residence and damaged his main gate, the Delhi government’s Public Works Department (PWD) is turning the Flagstaff Road colony where he stays into a gated one, it is learnt.

“We are constructing large iron gates on either side of the road to increase the securitycover at the Chief Minister’s residence as well as to stop protesters from entering the society. Work started three-four days ago. Currently, the gate is being installed on the Rajpur Road on the Civil Lines side, and work on the other side will start soon. These gates will be big, strong and tall,” a PWD official said.

On March 30, the BYJM had staged a protest outside the Chief Minister’s residence, with several protesters being seen on camera indulging in vandalism. Police had lodged an FIR and arrested eight members of the BJYM, questioned Surya, and also ‘bound down’ former North Delhi mayor Jai Prakash, who represents the Sadar Bazar ward, and Delhi BJYM president Vasu Rukhar under Section 41A of the CrPC.

The incident had prompted AAP MLA Saurabh Bhardwaj to file a petition in the Delhi High Court seeking the constitution of a special investigation team (SIT) headed by a retired high court judge for an independent probe into the attack. He also sought a probe into the role of police officers who were responsible for maintaining the security cordon outside the Chief Minister’s residence. Besides seeking a direction for appropriate security outside Kejriwal’s residence, the petition also prayed for compliance of an earlier court order for securing the road outside it.

In their reply, the Delhi Police had suggested that they are coordinating with the concerned agencies to install an iron gate at both ends — from Flagstaff Road to Rajpura Road to make the colony a gated one.

“We met with the Resident Welfare Association (RWA) and they later wrote a letter to PWD, Delhi Police and the departments concerned. We coordinated with all departments and the PWD is all set to install iron gates,” said a senior police officer.

Amod Sharma, an RWA member from the Civil Lines Association, confirmed to The Indian Express that they had written a letter to agencies concerned and coordinated with the Delhi Police. “There are gated colonies in other localities of Civil Lines, but not Flagstaff Road where there are 30-40 houses. All these protests outside the CM’s residence create problems for other residents, but we are hoping that after installing these gates, this will be resolved. Earlier, the Delhi CMs never stayed here; this is the first time our CM is residing here,” he said.

Sources said the security wing of the Delhi Police also conducted a security audit after the attack and increased the number of security personnel at the CM’s residence. “We have deployed one more PCR van, changed the locations of motor police vehicles, and are planning to make a dedicated reserve force for the security of the CM’s residence,” an officer said.

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