Caught on cam: How the massage video of imprisoned Delhi Minister sparked friction between BJP and AAP?

The Centre-ruling BJP and the Delhi-ruling Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) have been locking horns over a video that surfaced from Delhi's Tihar Jail in which an imprisoned Delhi Minister was seen getting a massage. Triggering the outcry over the alleged VIP treatment in prison, the video was going viral and caught national attention. 

Delhi Minister Satyendra Jain has been serving incarceration at Tihar Jail in a money laundering case. He is one of the seven cabinet ministers in the Delhi government, looking after key departments including Health & Family Welfare, Industries, Home, and Power. He was arrested by Enforcement Directorate (ED) on May 31, 2022, and lodged in Tihar Jail, along with his companions. 

While his prison sentence had drawn trouble for the Arvind Kejriwal government, the latest video showing an affluent treatment for him in prison has become the talking point of the BJP even as both parties began to clash in the assembly elections. The latest video is doing rounds on social media and it has come days after a special court in Delhi dismissed the bail plea moved by Jain. 

According to reports, the video has come at a high time when the BJP has been demanding that Satyendra Jain should be moved out of Tihar jail. In the footage, Jain was seen lying on his bed inside the cell while a man was next to him massaging his body. The footage was dated September 13 and after sharing the video on Saturday, BJP's National Spokesperson Shehzad Poonawalla wrote on Twitter, "So instead of Sazaa - Satyendra Jain was getting full VVIP Mazaa? Massage inside Tihar Jail? Hawalabaaz who hasn't got bail for five months gets a head massage! Violation of rules in a jail run by AAP Govt". 

"This is how official position abused for Vasooli & massage, thanks to Kejriwal", he added. Sharing another video, Poonawalla wrote, "One more. All rules are thrown to the dustbin! VVIP treatment in jail! Can Kejriwal defend such a Mantri? Should he not be sacked? This shows the true face of AAP! Vasooli & VVIP Massage inside Tihar Jail! Tihar is under AAP govt." Another BJP spokesperson Gaurav Bhatia has also slammed the AAP government and said that the party has become 'Spa and Massage Party'. 

Addressing a press conference, Bhatia said, "Where is Kejriwal hidden now. Jain can be seen enjoying massage and meeting visitors in his cell in total violation of rules and prison laws. This VVIP culture in jail is dangerous for democracy." AAP has come under the scanner and public scrutiny unprecedentedly as the Delhi government hasn't removed Jain from his ministerial post despite the fact that he has been inside the prison for over five months. 

Countering the allegations, AAP has maintained that Satyendra Jain was receiving physiotherapy treatment. Senior AAP leader and Delhi Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia has accused BJP of exercising cheap politics and slammed the saffron party of making fun of Jain's illness. Sisodia said, "Only BJP can make cruel jokes by leaving CCTV footage of an injured person's treatment. His spine was damaged. It's on record."