Akhilesh Yadav alleged that the Uttar Pradesh government does not want to face the SP because it has failed on all fronts. "No one could imagine that in a rural country like India, GST would be imposed on milk, curd, and ghee. Edible items are getting expensive, Yadav said.
Police on Monday stopped a protest march taken out by the Samajwadi Party (SP) under party president Akhilesh Yadav to decry price rise, unemployment, and poor law and order on the first day of the monsoon session of the state legislature. Police stopped the marchers on Vikramaditya Marg crossing near the SP office, as they started moving towards the Uttar Pradesh Vidhan Bhavan, Joint Commissioner of Police (Law and Order) Piyush Mordia said. When they were barred from marching to the assembly house, Yadav and the other party leaders sat on a dharna at the crossing. Police said the march was stopped because it had taken a different route than the one for which the permission was granted.
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The SP leaders also held a mock assembly session at the dharna site, presided over by former Vidhan Sabha speaker Mata Prasad Pandey. Mordia said the protesters were stopped so that the public does not face any inconvenience and there is no law and order problem.
Speaking to reporters at the dharna site, Yadav alleged that the Uttar Pradesh government does not want to face the SP because it has failed on all fronts. "No one could imagine that in a rural country like India, GST would be imposed on milk, curd, and ghee. Edible items are getting expensive, Yadav said. "They could not fulfill the dream of a job for all which they had shown to the public, because they failed to find the resources to do it. Jobs of youths, poor, and Dalits are now being snatched. The Railways and airports have been sold," he said.
"The recruitment in the Army was halted due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The youths are unsatisfied with the Agniveer scheme. False cases were registered against the youths for protesting against the government. The SP MLAs wanted to raise these issues earlier and stage a protest. Our MLAs wanted to protest inside the House, but the government stopped us. Today, we wanted to take out a protest march, but it was also stopped. MLAs are not allowed to enter the House. They wanted to raise the issues of the public in the House," said Yadav, the leader of the Opposition in the house. "Why does the government not want to face us? The government does not want to face because it has failed on all fronts," he said at the site.
Later in a tweet in Hindi, he said, "The BJP government is feeling insecure; therefore it is obstructing the SP's foot march on issues of price rise, unemployment, poor law and order, atrocities on farmers, women and youths. The weaker the power, the greater the oppression." Asked about the SP's march, Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath told reporters, "There is no harm if a person or a party puts forth its point of view in a democratic manner. Had they sought permission as per rules, police would have given them a safe and appropriate route. But, this is also the responsibility of citizens, organisations and political parties that they should seek permission for their processions or protest marches without affecting public order. I feel that expecting the Samajwadi Party to adhere to any rule or manners is 'kapol kalpana' (fables)." Ahead of the march, barricades were put up on Vikramaditya Marg by the police, and the public was not allowed to use the road
The SP held its march on Monday after its protest at the legislative assembly on September 14 was scuppered by police, which barred its leaders from reaching Chaudhary Charan Singh's statue in the assembly premises citing the Allahabad High Court ruling against holding protest in high-security zone. The protestors were then instead taken in police vehicles to Eco Garden, the designated place for holding dharnas in the state capital.
The main opposition party had then changed its tactics and in place of their five-day protest programme had decided to hold a march on September 19. Meanwhile, Shivpal Yadav, who heads the Pragatisheel Samajwadi Party -- Lohia (PSPL), but is an SP MLA from Etawah's Jaswantnagar assembly constituency did not participate in the protest march, as he was in Etawah.'
Shivpal Yadav was also not present in the assembly on Monday. SP MLA from Sirathu, and senior leader of Apna Dal (Kamerawadi) Pallavi Patel attended the assembly session and did not take part in the march.
MLAs of SP ally Rashtriya Lok Dal staged a protest at Chaudhary Charan Singh statue in the UP Vidhan Bhavan to protest the non-payment of sugarcane dues to farmers and later took part in the House proceedings.