I-N-D-I-A bloc protests against BJP to mark Gandhi Jayanti

Opposition bloc I-N-D-I-A organised a padyatra in south Mumbai on Monday to mark the birth anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi and Lal Bahadur Shastri, and also protest against the NDA governments in the state and Centre.

Minor skirmishes between the police and political workers were reported along the route that the organisers wanted to take. The workers said they were to begin from the Metro cinema chowk and then walk to Hutatma Chowk via Fashion Street and then go to the Regal cinema chowk to visit the statue of the late Balasaheb Thackeray. However, they alleged that the police asked them to start from the Regal point towards the Hutama memorial and then walk towards the Ambedkar statue, Rajiv Gandhi statue and Mahatma Gandhi statue near Mantralaya.

Party workers allege they were manhandled by the police. Pics/Shadab Khan

In the ensuing ruckus near the Congress office, some 100 party workers were detained. The organisers had named the protest the ‘Main Bhi Gandhi’ march. All constituents of the Opposition front participated. Mumbai Congress President Varsha Gaikwad said the police tried to stop the morcha midway but the crowd kept marching ahead.

Gaikwad said aggression from the police was a way of government oppression. “It is unfortunate if permission was not granted for a silent morcha, that too for Mahatma Gandhi. Earlier, those participating in Gandhiji’s yatra used to be detained by the British… we had a similar experience today. Everybody knows under whose order the police went in aggressive mode,” she said.

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