Bhattal slams Badal govt for 'draconian' anti-protest bill

  • HT Correspondent, Hindustan Times, Sangrur
  • Updated: Jan 23, 2015 19:36 IST

Former chief minister and senior Congress leader Rajinder Kaur Bhattal condemned Punjab government for its rigid stand over prevention of damage of Public and Private Property Bill 2014. Bhattal said they were repeatedly ignoring protests by the people of Punjab.

In a statement issued here on Friday, Bhattal said despite protests by various groups and organizations across the state opposing the bill, state government seemed reluctant to withdraw this draconian bill.

She said that the Congress had been vocal about its reservations regarding this bill in the state vidhan sabha. "The draconian bill is solely aimed at curbing the voice of the people, as it will curb protests and demonstrations against the state government," said Bhattal.

She added that this law violated a citizen's civil liberties by depriving him of his fundamental right. "The beauty of democracy is that it allows people to carry out protests, demonstrations and rallies without the government's consent.

But a provision in this bill states that a protest would be considered as a non-bailable offence. This is an anti-democratic move on the part of the government," Bhattal said, expressing her displeasure over the state government maintaining silence over the bill.

She said that this law was designed to suit the political interests of Badal government which does not want people to raise their voice against policies and on the rampant corruption within state administration. She also criticized the Modi government for promulgating ordinance on the land acquisition act.

"Narendra Modi government is working for the corporate houses, and in process disregarding the interest of the common man in the country," said Badal.

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