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Delhi Police detain Gopal Italia, the head of Gujarat AAP

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Delhi Police detain Gopal Italia, the head of Gujarat AAP
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New Delhi: Gopal Italia, the head of the AAP's Gujarat chapter, appeared before the National Commission for Women (NCW) on Thursday amid protests from AAP members outside the panel's office over his alleged remarks against Prime Minister Narendra Modi. He was detained by the Delhi Police for more than 2.5 hours.

Senior police officials stated that after receiving a complaint that Italia's followers were making a scene outside the NCW headquarters, a squad of officers arrived and apprehended him.

Italia was later released by police and is scheduled to address a press conference late evening.

Reacting to police action against the AAP leader, Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal said Italia's detention had triggered massive anger in the Patel community across Gujarat.

Taking to Twitter, the AAP national convenor also asked why the "entire BJP" was after Italia.

Kejriwal's deputy Manish Sisodia termed Italia's detention as "BJP politics" and alleged that he had been "detained because he belonged to a party that knew how to transform schools".

NCW Chairperson Rekha Sharma had summoned Italia for using "abusive and indecent language" against PM Modi and said his comment was "gender biased, misogynist and condemnable".

She told reporters after the hearing that Italia, in his verbal statement, had claimed that he was not the person in the video.

However, in his written response, he said he did not mean it.

An NCW official said the commission had to rush to arrange a translator to record Italia's statement as he started speaking in Gujarati in the middle of the hearing.

After the hearing, the police detained Italia, drawing flak from the AAP.

"With the arrest of Gopal Italia, there is massive anger in the Patel community across Gujarat," Kejriwal said in a tweet in Hindi.

"Why is the entire BJP after Gopal Italia?" he asked in another post on the micro-blogging site.

While NCW officials said the AAP's Gujarat chief was detained for "creating a situation that disrupted law and order in the area", a senior Delhi Police officer, while confirming his detention, did not divulge further details.

During the hearing, the AAP supporters protesting outside tried to enter the NCW building and police had to be called to restrain them, an official of the women's rights body said.

"Those who are detaining Gopal Italia have only that much understanding of politics. They don't know how to improve (standards of) schools and teach students. They couldn't make even one amazing school while being in government for the last 27 years," Sisodia said at a press conference when asked for comment on Italia's detention.

"They arrested Gopal Italia because he comes from a party that knows reforming schools, rest is nothing but politics," he charged.

The BJP's IT cell in-charge Amit Malviya had on Sunday shared a video on Twitter where Italia could be heard calling PM Modi a "neech aadmi" (lowly person) following which the NCW took cognisance.

"An indecent word for the prime minister is also an insult to the women of our country. The abusive language used by you is gender biased, misogynistic and extremely shameful, condemnable and unbecoming of you," the NCW had said in its summons issued on October 9.

The AAP on Monday defended its Gujarat unit chief over his alleged remarks and hit back at the BJP, saying it was using an old video to target Italia now as he hailed from a poor family and belonged to the Patidaar community.

Launching a counterattack, the AAP also shared a purported video of BJP MP Parvesh Verma in which he could be heard using certain derogatory words against Kejriwal and demanded that the saffron party either clarify its stand on the remarks or take action against him.


With inputs from IANS


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TAGS:NWCDelhiPoliceAAP GujaratGopal Italia
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