PM Narendra Modi is a threat to democracy: Jignesh Mevani

Frederick Owens
January 10, 2018

The MLA from Vadgam, who shot to prominence after he launched a campaign across Gujarat against the BJP following the incident in Una where Dalits were flogged by vigilantes for skinning a dead cow, with Hardik Patel and Alpesh Thakor, formed the troika that helped substantially revive the Congress's fortunes in Modi's home state.

Mevani was reported to hold a rally demanding Dalit rights and release of Chandrashekhar after the government was accused of perpetrating violence against Dalits in Pune violence last week.

Azad, 30, was arrested under the tough National Security Act over Thakur-Dalit clashes in Uttar Pradesh's Saharanpur district previous year.

The Parliament Street on Tuesday witnessed crowds demanding the release of Chandrashekhar Azad - the founder of the Dalit outfit Bhim Army who was arrested in June 2016 from Himachal Pradesh because he was named the main accused in Thakur-Dalit clashes in Uttar Pradesh's Saharanpur district.

Assam farmers leader Akhil Gogoi and senior Supreme Court lawyer Prashant Bhushan were also present apart from students from JNU, Delhi University, Lucknow University and Allahabad University among others.

The "Yuva Hunkar" rally, which began amidst heavy police presence in Delhi today, saw a low turnout.

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Although the authorities had maintained until the last minute that Mevani and his supporters did not have permission to hold the event, the rally organisers, however, went on with the event and were not stopped by the Delhi Police.

"No formal permission was given for the rally but it was allowed in view of peace and law and order".

Reacting to Minister of State MoS, Anantkumar Hegde's remarks on the Constitution, Mevani said, "We believe in the constitution and will protect it".

In his first rally in the Capital after becoming an elected representative, Mr. Mevani said the BJP has only practised the politics of breaking the country but he would act as a sewing machine by sticking to constitutional values and practising "politics of love" to unite the nation.

Addressing the rally former JNU students union leader Kanhaiya Kumar also said that they believe in politics of love and unity, not hate and division. We are not love jihad guys. "There's a looming threat to our democracy and Constitution today", he said. Why was Rohith Vemula killed? You attack me as much as you want, I will stick to the Constitution.

Later in the day, the organisers claimed a delegation would march towards the prime minister's residence in Delhi's Lok Kalyan Marg and hand over a copy of the Indian Constitution and the Manusmriti - ancient Hindu text - to him, and would ask to choose between the two.

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