New Delhi: First it was 10 Janpath. Next it was 7 Race Course Road. On Monday, the protest against acquittal of Congress leader Sajjan Kumar in a 1984 genocide case moved to Vijay Chowk where over 300 men and women blocked the high-security access to Parliament House for over an hour, forcing MPs arriving for the Budget session to disembark from their official vehicles and walk in the sweltering heat.
Janata Dal (United) chief Sharad Yadav was one of the parliamentarians who had to walk. Angry protesters had to be physically lifted off the road and taken into custody. After being taken to a nearby police station, they were allowed to leave.
Earlier in the day, Sikh protesters marched to Vijay Chowk, a key crossing between the parliament complex and the north and south blocks that house the Prime Minister’s office and the home, defense, finance and foreign ministries. They raised slogans against the UPA government and tried to occupy the road that leads to Rashtrapati Bhavan but were stopped by police. Sources said the protesters assembled from all directions in small groups, taking the cops by surprise.
Police, on their part, had barricaded the area. The entire events of the day were video-recorded.
The indefinite fast of Nirpreet Kaur, one of the 1984 Sikh Genocide victims, has entered the fourth day. Kaur is protesting against Kumar’s acquittal. While AAP expressed support for her on the first day, Hindu radical BJP president Vijay Goel did so on Monday. “The BJP has been trying to help the community get justice for a long time,” Goel said. Kaur, who lost her father in the genocide, on Sunday shot off a letter to the Prime Minister asking him to institute a Special Investigation Team probe into the genocide. She has also demanded the CBI file an appeal in Delhi high court against Sajjan Kumar in the case.