Punjab allows peaceful protest by students
Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh on Tuesday said his government would not stop students from protesting against the Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) and other controversial actions of the Central government, but would not allow peace to be disturbed at any cost.
Referring to the proposed January 1 statewide protest by Left-aligned student unions against the CAA, as well as the National Register of Citizens (NRC) and National Population Register (NPR), the Chief Minister said the protest was the democratic right of every citizen, including students, to stage a peaceful dharna and march against these initiatives.
Even his government, Amarinder Singh pointed out, was totally opposed to the CAA and the NRC in view of the fundamentally divisive and discriminatory nature of the legislation and action initiated by the BJP-led government at the Centre.
During an anti-CAA protest organised by the Congress in Ludhiana on Monday, he had reiterated his government's decision not to allow the controversial legislation to be implemented in the state under any circumstances.
There was, thus, no question, of barring students from coming out against these actions of the Central government, said the Chief Minister, making it clear that as long as the protestors did not take the law in their hands in any manner, the police would not prevent them from carrying out their proposed campaign.
However, the Chief Minister warned that no violence or destruction of public property would be tolerated during the planned protest.
Amarinder Singh also urged the student leaders to ensure that proposed protest is carried out peacefully, and to keep a check for possible infiltration of 'goonda' elements among the protestors.IANS