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HindustanTimes Tue,16 Sep 2014

Residents demand proper place for holding protests

HT Live Correspondent, Hindustan Times  Ludhiana, February 20, 2013
First Published: 21:20 IST(20/2/2013) | Last Updated: 21:21 IST(20/2/2013)

With local residents facing unnecessary inconvenience and traffic snarls every time a protest is held anywhere in the city, they feel there is need to earmark a dedicated area for holding demonstrations and sit-ins on the lines of Jantar Mantar in New Delhi.

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Residents said that it was not right on part of protesters to hold road blockages in the city to express resentment over various issues. The city witnesses traffic jams every time a protest demonstration is held on Jagraon bridge or any other area in Ludhiana. Many a times, road shows by politicians also result in traffic snarls on main roads of the city.

Interestingly, more than 150 new vehicles come out on Ludhiana every day, thus further aggravating the already acute problem of traffic jams. So, even as burgeoning population and increasing number of vehicles contribute to traffic congestion on city roads, traffic police have failed to stem the rot.

A case in point is the protest held by Centre for Indian Trade Unions on Wednesday, which led to chaos in the city. Protestors blocked the roads right from Giaspura through the city and created problems for commuters.

“Whenever there is a protest in the city, we get ready beforehand to guarantee public safety,” said ACP (traffic) Dhruman Nimbale.

Jagraon bridge in Ludhiana has emerged as a favourite spot for protestors, which leads to bottlenecks for passing traffic.

It is pertinent to mention here that traffic in the area was disrupted a few days back when hundreds of members of Valmiki Samaj held a protest demonstration at Jagraon bridge. Drivers of four- and two-wheelers could be seen struggling to snake ahead since the bridge is a busy junction from where roads lead to different parts of the city.

However, Surinder Kalyan, chairman of the Valmiki Samaj Bachao Andolan and organiser of the protest, claimed that no traffic was disrupted due to the demonstration.

“Though these protesters take up issues in favour of the general public, they add to the common man's problems by hindering traffic and resulting in chaos all around. A lot of time of the public is wasted. Thus, there is a need for a proper place for holding protests in the city,” remarked local businesswoman Sapna.

“There is an urgent need for authorities to designate a proper place for holding protests and sit-ins so that the travelling public does not face any problem every other day,” said a student Prakash.

“Such protests should be banned until and unless there is a proper place earmarked for activists since such demonstrations give rise to new problems rather than solving the existing ones,” remarked Randeep Jain, a businessman.

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