NEW DELHI (AP) _ Police arrested the New Delhi state law minister Tuesday after concluding his university and law degrees were fake and registration as an attorney in the capital was illegal.
Jitendra Singh Tomar has said his degrees are real and he would prove it in court. Leaders of the Aam Admi Party, or Common Man Party, condemned the arrest of its member and said police should have waited for a court verdict.
Tomar faces charges of cheating, criminal conspiracy and forging documents, said police spokesman Rajan Bhagat. If convicted, he could be jailed for up to seven years.
According to Bhagat, Tomar said he obtained a degree from a university in Uttar Pradesh state and a law degree from a university in Bihar state, but police found both to be fake.
The Bar Association of New Delhi registered a police complaint against Tomar last month. The New Delhi police registered a criminal case against him on Monday after completing an investigation into the complaint, Bhagat told reporters.
Several Indian politicians, including some in the governing Bharatiya Janata Party, or BJP, face similar charges.
The AAP, formed by anti-corruption crusader Arvind Kejriwal, won a massive victory in New Delhi state elections earlier this year, defeating Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s BJP.
One of AAP’s leaders, Manish Sisodia, said police should have waited for a verdict by the New Delhi High Court, which is hearing a petition against him and has summoned university records.