Join our Mailing List

"As long as human rights are violated, there can be no foundation for peace. How can peace grow where speaking the truth is itself a crime?"

Gujjar Stir on, Cops Crack Whip

June 3, 2008

Medha Chaturvedi & Deeksha Chopra,TNN
Times of India
June 2, 2008, 0422 hrs IST

NEW DELHI -- The Gujjar community is in no mood to suspend its
current agitation. On Sunday morning, thousands of protesters
assembled outside Pragati Maidan and walked to Jantar Mantar. They
were en route to the BJP headquarters on Ashoka Road when they were
intercepted by the police.

The road leading to Jantar Mantar resembled a fortress with hundreds
of police personnel in place and barricades to keep a check on around
5,000 Gujjar protesters. When the protesters tried to break the
barricades, a police lathicharge and water cannon attack followed.
According to the police, around 700 Gujjar protesters were detained
from the site. They were later released. About 12 protesters were
hurt in the lathicharge.

DCP (New Delhi) Anand Mohan said because the demonstrations turned
violent, they had to resort to minor lathicharge and water cannons.
"We detained the protestors and then let them go. We didn't arrest
anyone," said Mohan.

Other groups protesting on different issues near the venue suspended
their agitation for some time. On the same road, students of the All
Indian Tibetan College had organised a demonstration for free Tibet.
"We had to stop our procession for a while in the morning, because of
the Gujjars. Around 12 noon, the police had to control the protesters
who were trying to break the barricades by firing two water cannons,"
said Lobsang, a participating student. He added that while their
protests were non-violent, they moved away because they didn't want
to get caught in the crossfire.

A juice seller near the protest venue said he had to close his
business anticipating violence. "At first it was a peaceful rally
where leaders were addressing a gathering, putting forward their
demands but by noon they started moving and jumping over the
barricades and clashing with the police personnel. That's when the
police stopped them," said Dharminder Singh.
CTC National Office 1425 René-Lévesque Blvd West, 3rd Floor, Montréal, Québec, Canada, H3G 1T7
T: (514) 487-0665
Developed by plank