AAP's protest march to PM Modi's residence, in support of Arvind Kejriwal, stopped at Parliament Street

Delhi CM Arvind Kejriwal, alongwith Manish Sisodia, Satyendar Jain and Gopal Rai, is sitting at the office of LG for past one week, demanding him to direct IAS officers to end their 'strike' and approve doorstep delivery scheme of his government. 

AAP's protest march to PM Modi's residence, in support of Arvind Kejriwal, stopped at Parliament Street
Pic courtesy: IANS

New Delhi: The Aam Aadmi Party's (AAP) protest march from Mandi House to Prime Minister Narendra Modi's residence was stopped at Parliament street on Sunday. The Delhi police said that the party had not received permission for the march. 

The march which began around 5 pm was in support of Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal and three of his Cabinet colleagues, Manish Sisodia, Satyendar Jain and Gopal Rai, who have been holding a sit-in at the Lt Governor's office for the last one week, demanding that Anil Baijal direct IAS officers to end their 'strike'. They also demand that the LG approve the proposal for doorstep delivery of ration. 

Also, five prime Metro stations in the heart of Delhi were on Sunday closed. Lok Kalyan Marg metro station, which falls in the vicinity of PM Modi's residence at 7, Lok Kalyan Marg, was the first to have been shut ahead of the march. 

"As advised by Delhi Police, no entry or exit will be available at Lok Kalyan Marg station from 12 noon onwards till further directions," a senior DMRC official had said earlier. He had later said that four more stations were closed, but interchange facilities at central secretariat station would be available. "As advised by the police, entry and exit at four more metro stations will be closed from 2 pm onwards till further directions. The stations are - Patel Chowk, Central Secretariat, Udyog Bhawan and Janpath," the official had said. "However, interchange between Yellow and Violet Lines at Central Secretariat will remain available," he had added.

Kejriwal had on Friday said that the march was planned after his letters to the PM, seeking his intervention in the matter, drew no response. 

Kejriwal on Saturday had alleged that there is de facto president's rule in Delhi because of what the AAP government describes as an ongoing IAS officers' 'strike'. In response to a tweet about IAS officers 'withdrawing from work', he had tweeted, "I agree. It is de facto president's rule in Delhi through IAS strike."

On Sunday, he posted another tweet requesting PM Modi to ask IAS officers to call off their 'strike'. 

Meanwhile, asserting that they were 'being used for political ends', IAS officers on Sunday said that they were not on 'strike' as claimed by Kejriwal. They also said that all files were being moved and that they were feeling frightened and victimised.

"I would like to inform that we are not on strike. The information that IAS officers in Delhi are on strike is completely false and baseless. We are attending meetings, all departments are doing their works. We are sometimes also working on holidays, all work is being done, all files are being moved... Reports over how desilting of drains has been hampered due to our so-called strike is also not true," Manisha Saxena, IAS, said.

"We are only accountable to the law. We are completely apolitical and neutral. We have never been required to come out and clarify our stand," she added.

Another IAS officer, Transport Commissioner Varsha Joshi, said, "I have been targeted by social media handles of a certain political party in an unfair manner. The way we have been forced to do certain jobs is not righ... We are feeling frightened and victimised, we are being used for political ends, we are here only for work... All files are being moved... Work not being hampered... Shocked and scared after chief secretary's 'assault'."

(With PTI inputs)