New Delhi: Supporters of Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal's Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) today clashed twice with the police, broke barricades and kept security forces on edge at central Delhi, a high-security zone that houses the parliament, various ministries and the President's home. (See pics)
Hundreds of slogan-shouting people in Gandhi caps pushed, climbed and crossed barricades. Some protesters were injured when the police used batons on those who jumped over barricades. Six were taken to the hospital, said an AAP member. (AAP leader Ashutosh explains why Delhi must bear with the protests)
Four policemen and two journalists were also injured. An AAP supporter allegedly grabbed a reporter's neck and slapped a cameraperson covering the clashes. There was also stone-pelting. AAP claimed their protest has been "infiltrated" by people from other political parties. (Let AAP protest, chief minister must govern, writes Captain Gopinath)
Mr Kejriwal, who spent the night sleeping on a road in the heart of Delhi, said his sit-in protest against the city's police force is indefinite. (Track LIVE updates)
"If the central government does not agree to our demands by January 26, then we will fill Rajpath (the central boulevard in the heart of central Delhi) with lakhs of people," he warned. (Kejriwal shuts down the city: foreign media on AAP protests)
The Chief Minister has refused to relocate his demonstration to Jantar Mantar, the designated spot for large public gatherings.
"The chief minister decides where to sit, not the home minister," he told reporters. (Watch)
Mr Kejriwal and his AAP want the control of the Delhi police to be transferred from the union home ministry to the Delhi government. He is also insistent that five policemen must be suspended immediately for failing to make arrests based on the orders of his Law Minister Somnath Bharti.
If the demonstration continues, it risks disrupting the annual Republic Day parade on Sunday when the country's military might is displayed along the road leading to Rashtrapati Bhavan. (Government's January 26 headache: how to shift Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal)