A Delhi Police crime branch team on Friday questioned Indian Youth Congress president Srinivas BV over COVID-related material, including medicines and oxygen cylinders, being provided by him to people. The questioning is being done following a Delhi High Court order, police said. The court on May 4 had directed police to examine instances of politicians allegedly procuring and distributing Remdesivir in the national capital and take steps for lodging of FIR in case of offence.
“The policemen wanted to know how did I get the relief material to distribute among the people. I said I was helping people to save their lives and we have an entire team of hundreds of volunteers at IYC (Indian Youth Congress) that was working round the clock to arrange material and provide it to people,” Srinivas said. BJP leaders, including East Delhi MP Gautam Gambhir and Delhi unit spokesperson Harish Khurana who have also been questioned by police in connection with distribution of relief material, said the issue should not be politicised.
Srinivas said he was undaunted by the police questioning and was only helping those who had no support from any quarters in this hour of crisis. “We are continuing our work and not scared of police or any PIL. There is nothing wrong in helping people who have no one to fall back upon and who are desperately trying to save themselves and their families from the fatal virus,” the IYC president said.
Srinivas said he answered questions of the police team and also submitted a detailed written response to its queries. Congress’ chief spokesperson Randeep Surjewala said at a time when people are craving for help all over the country, the government is wasting its time by indulging in “raid raaj” instead of helping the people. “IYC chief, PM (Narendra) Modi and (Union Home Minister) Amit Shah have done a shameful act,” he said. BJP MP Gambhir, who has been helping people with oxygen concentrators and medicines, said opposition parties should refrain from politicising due process of the law.
“Opposition should not indulge in needless politicisation of due process. Delhi Police has asked for a reply from us & we’ve provided all details. I will keep serving Delhi & its people to the best of my abilities always!” he tweeted. A senior police officer said, “The high court has directed us to conduct inquiry into politicians involved in distribution of COVID-19 medicines and other items which we are doing before submitting our report to it.” Aam Aadmi Party MLA Dilip Pandey and Delhi Congress vice president Ali Mehdi have also been approached by police in following the high court directive. Mehdi said he has submitted his response to a Crime Branch officer.
“I will continue to work along with my team to provide relief to people,” he said. Delhi BJP spokesperson Khurana said he was questioned by the crime branch on Wednesday and added that Congress leaders should stop politicising the issue and linking names of the prime minister and home minister with it.
Certain politicians are misguiding people and spreading lies about the court directed probe which is very unfortunate, he added.