Sunday, Feb 18, 2018 | Last Update : 03:44 PM IST
For army personnel Malkev Singh, who has been protesting against the Centre’s negligence towards armed force’s one rank.
New Delhi: A day after the National Green Tribunal (NGT) banned public gatherings at Jantar Mantar, the national capital’s landmark dharna and demonstration site saw protestors urging the government to provide an alternative site where they could register their voice.
For army personnel Malkev Singh, who has been protesting against the Centre’s negligence towards armed force’s one rank, one pension (OROP) scheme near the monument for the past two years, the NGT’s order came as a rude shock.
“Where are we going to raise our voices to get justice?” asked Sunil Gore, who along with his group, has been protesting for farmers’ rights here since July this year.
“We came all the way from Madhya Pradesh to be heard by the government and look what the government did to us. First they took our land and now they are taking away our right to speech,” said Mr Gore.
Jantar Mantar was the flag bearer of dharnas from 1993 after the Ayodhya-Babri movement and since then it has seen various protests ranging from political to social issues. Many protestors even said that this is a “political vendetta” against their protest as they alleged that the government cannot do anything except “censure” them.
The NGT’s decision came after a plea by an activist and others, who said procession and agitations by individual or a group leads to noise pollution and to strewing of garbage, thus making the place filthy.
“It is clear the petitioners are suffering of violation of laws, air pollution, and health hazards due to lack of cleanliness and non performance of duty by the authorities of the state which is endangering their life,” the bench observed.