• Unite India, Save Constitution yatra seeks legal ban on cop firing on nonviolent protests

    Counterview Representative

    February 4, 2020

    A Unite India, Save Constitution yatra, which was not allowed to commence from Delhi on January 30 by the police despite having necessary permissions, continued normally after it crossed Rajasthan border after it passed through Gurgaon. While in Rewari in Haryana, BJP workers protested against the yatra, on reaching Rajasthan, it was able to conduct programmes in Kotputli, Shuklawas and Chandwaji, before reaching Jaipur.


    After conducting public assemblies at Jaipur's Albert Hall, Kumaranand Hall and Shaheed Smaarak, where people were told about adverse impact of the Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA), National Register of Citizens (NRC) and the National Population Register (NPR), the yatra reached Udaipur, where it addressed media.


    To proceed to Madhya Pradesh via Dungarpur and Baswada, apart from making people aware of CAA-NRC-NPR, yatra leaders told people how the government was failing to create jobs in the rural areas, even as undermining the premiere rural guarantee scheme. Mahatma Gandhi National Employee Guarantee Scheme (MGNREGS).


    Socialist leader Dr Sunilam, a yatra leader, told newspersons in Udaipur that the yatra was meant to observe 85 years of socialist movement. Those participating in the yatra include representatives of the Samajwadi Samagam, Rastra Seva Dal, Hind Mazdoor Sabha, National Association of People's Movements, Socialist Organizations, Yusuf Meher Ali Center and the Samajwadi Vichar Yatra.


    The aim of the yatra, said a communique by its organisers, is to restore the values of the socialist movement of India, establish constitutional values and counter anti-constitutional measures like CAA-NRC and NPR, privatization of public sector, rising unemployment, rising inequality, mob lynching, conspiracy to destroy crores of tribals, increasing crimes on Dalits, women and minorities, and so on.


    Dr Sunilam said, the 2020 budget presented by the Finance Minister was anti-people and favourable to corporates. Instead of allocating 65 percent of the budget for the 65 percent of the population living in rural India, the budget allocation for farmers was not even 2 percent of the total, he added.

    65 percent of the population lives in rural India, but budget allocation for farmers is not even 2 percent of the total

    Criticizing privatization of the Life Insurance Corporation (LIC) as it "will destroy the insurance industry", Dr Sunilam said, the country does not need trains like Tejas, rather the government needs to improve the conditions of existing trains and the quality of services and security offered to passengers.


    He added, sufficient funds have not been apportioned for farmer debt-relief and Minimum Support Price (MSP). A co-convenor of the yatra, he said that the budget has made no provisions of unemployment grants for the 15 crore jobless people of India and that the government has completely failed in its promise to provide 100 day employment under MGNREGAS.


    Saying that the reduction of 9,500 crore in MGNREGS budget is against the interests of the unemployed, Dr Sunilam asserted that the allocation should have been at least 1 lakh crore. He added, even after having 14 different kinds of government-approved identity cards, the proposal of a 15th card through the new law, costing coffers Rs 70,000 crore, is a wastage of taxpayer’s resources.


    Those leading the yatra included Doctor Javed of the Samajwadi Vichaar Yatra, Bal Bhai from Rajasthan, Rohan Gupta from Jharkhand, PJ Josey from Kerala, Lokesh Bhiwani from Haryana and Ganesh Gondare from Maharashtra.

    The yatra put forward several demands from the Government of India, including cancellation CAA, NRC and NPR; legal restrictions on police firing on non-violent movements; prohibition of privatization of public sector units, education and health services; include the right to employment in fundamental rights; debt relief to farmers; and so on.

     


     

     

     

    First published in Counterview

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