NEW DELHI — Congress leader Pawan Khera was on Thursday arrested from the IGI Airport here by officials of the Assam Police just hours after he was stopped from boarding a flight to Raipur, sources said.
He was apprehended at the airport by Assam Police, who arrived with an FIR, in connection with a case lodged against him at the Haflong police station, a state police spokesman said. He will be presented in a Delhi court and will be taken to Assam on transit remand, ANI reported.
According to the Assam Police, an FIR had been registered against Khera at the Haflong police station in Dima Hasao district.
“Delhi Police was approached to arrest Khera and the Assam Police officials will bring him to Assam after taking permission from a local court,” said the official of Assam Police.
Delhi Police had earlier said that Khera was stopped from boarding the flight following a request by their Assam counterparts.
After Khera was stopped from boarding the flight, Congress leaders and workers staged a protest at the airport.
CISF personnel have been deployed to handle the situation.
Khera, en route to Raipur for the party plenary starting on Friday, was accompanied by Randeep Surjewala and Shakeel Ahmed.
Condemning the move, party spokesperson Supriya Shrinet said in a series of tweets: “While going from Delhi to Raipur to attend the Congress session, senior Congress leader Mr. Pawan Khera was taken off the flight by the Assam Police. What was the emergency that the Assam Police came to Delhi and did this act? Earlier ED raids in Raipur and now such act shows BJP’s fury. This is condemnable.
“We are all on the @IndiGo6E flight 6E 204 to Raipur and all of a sudden my colleague Pawan Khera has been asked to deplane What sort of high handedness is this? Is there any rule of law? On what grounds is this being done and under whose order?”
Senior Congress leader KC Venugopal tweeted, “Modi government is acting like a bunch of goons by deplaning Pawan Khera from the Delhi-Raipur flight and preventing him from joining the AICC Plenary. Using a flimsy FIR to restrict his movement and silence him is a shameful, unacceptable act. The entire party stands with Pawan ji.”
During a recent news conference, Khera misspelled Prime Minister Modi’s name when calling for a joint parliamentary investigation into the Adani-Hindenburg row.
“If Narasimha Rao could form a JPC (Joint Parliamentary Committee), if Atal Bihari Vajpayee could form a JPC, then what problem does Narendra Gautam Das…sorry Damodardas…Modi have?” he said, appearing to fumble upon the middle name with a colleague sitting beside him.
The BJP had demanded Khera’s arrest on charges of insulting Prime Minister Narendra Modi. After a BJP representative submitted a police complaint, an FIR was lodged. — (With inputs from IANS)
Photo: Congress leaders stage a protest dharna at the IGI Airport after the party leader Pawan Khera was allegedly deboarded from the plane owing to an FIR against him, in New Delhi on Thursday. — IANS