Delhi Lieutenant Governor Anil Baijal on Tuesday requested protesters at Shaheen Bagh in New Delhi to call off their protests citing “inconveniences” to school children and daily commuters.
After meeting a delegation of protesters, Baijal tweeted, “Met the delegation of protestors from Shaheen Bagh. Assured them to convey their concerns to appropriate authorities. Appealed to call off their agitation in view of continued inconvenience to school children, patients, daily commuters, local residents, etc. due to blockade of road.”
Baijal said he “once again” requested the protesters to maintain peace.
The Shaheen Bagh protests is one of the most resilient to have come out of all the anti-Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) protests with women on the forefront. Hundreds of women, mostly residents of the area, have been sitting on a 24/7 peaceful protest since December 15 against the CAA.
The women of Shaheen Bagh have become the face of anti-CAA protests in Delhi and have inspired several such indefinite protests including one at the iconic clock tower in Lucknow.
This show of peaceful dissent has faced much resistance from the authorities.
Baijal’s comments come a day after the Delhi police claimed that the protests have caused “anxiety” among parents of school-going children because of the blockade.
On Monday the Delhi police Twitter handle said, “We have already appealed to you once before. Meanwhile, more complaints have been received regarding inconvenience due to blockade of Road No.13A, particularly to school children who are facing extreme hardship in reaching their schools, coaching centres and private tuitions.”
“Their parents have expressed deep anxiety in view of forthcoming Board examinations. Daily commuters, local residents and businesspersons are also facing acute harassment. We once again appeal to the protesters at Shaheen Bagh to clear the road and restore normal traffic,” said another tweet by the Delhi police.
To this, protesters at Shaheen Bagh responded saying they were letting school vans and ambulances pass through.
The Shaheen Bagh protests have riled up many. BJP IT cell chief Amit Malviya tweeted a video last week, which he claimed was a “sting operation” and said that the protests were sponsored.
In response, the protesters have sent Malviya a defamation notice.