The photos, which were being widely circulated on social media on Thursday, show municipal workers dumping garbage on the pavement outside the India Islamic Cultural Centre (IICC) on Lodhi Road, and a short while later, BJP Delhi unit chief Satish Upadhyay and former AAP leader Shazia Ilmi were photographed sweeping the same with brooms.
While the party has distanced itself from the embarrassing photographs, Aam Aadmi Party chief Arvind Kejriwal said on Thursday, “Satish Upadhyay first had the streets littered and then cleaned. The BJP in Delhi has committed fraud on the PM’s Swachh Bharat campaign.”
Both Upadhyay and Ilmi denied knowledge of garbage being dumped. “I was only one among 250-odd participants who had gone to participate in the event. I am not blaming anyone. I am only stating the facts. I condemn what has been done. Maybe it was human error. Let us leave it at that,” Upadhyay told Mirror.
“The question must be directed to Dr Siraj Qureshi of IICC, who is one of the nine brand ambassdors for Swachh Bharat Abhiyan. I had only gone to the Centre to participate. I have been taking part in cleanliness drives with groups such as Chintan. It certainly should not have been organised this way,” Ilmi said.
Across Delhi, BJP MLAs took up the cleanliness drive with renewed vigour. Rajinder Nagar MLA R P Singh said such incidents will not stop the party’s efforts, adding he had participated in cleaning up a slum cluster on Thursday evening,” “We will investigate who did this… This is a symbolic gesture aimed at Muslim localities where the message of clean India needs to reach urgently,” said M Wadood Sajid, media advisor to the IICC president.
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