400 activists of Jan Sangharsh Manch detained by the Gujarat Police

Around 400 activists of Jan Sangharsh Manch were detained by the Gujarat Police at Panch Kunwa area of Ahmedabad when they gathered to hold a Peace Rally around 5pm today.

After 10 years of the Gujarat violence, when Jan Sangharsh Manch (JSM) put all efforts to bring both the communities together, over a thousand people gathered to hold the rally, the government without any reason whatsoever refused permission and came down heavily on the peaceful gathering. The message sent by the government is very clear that even after 10 years, they do not wish people of both communities to come together and wants to keep them divided.

Among those who are arrested are Dr. Mukul Sinha, Amrish Patel, Samshad Khan Pathan, Zakia Soman, Noorjahan Diwan, Nirjhari Sinha, Usman Qureshi, Ramesh Srivastava, Vishnu Kadam, Ramesh Makwana, Jignesh Mevani, Anjum Sayyed and several riot victims.

The JSM had made an application seeking permission for rally well in advance on 16.02.2012. Despite knowing the importance of the Peace Rally, the government without assigning any reason, refused permission only on 26.02.2012 such that no legal action could be taken. The representatives of JSM met the Police Commissioner Mr. Saikia on 27.02.2012 and had even agreed to change the route of the rally to Ashram road instead of the city area, suggested by the Police Commissioner. But, subsequently even that route was refused as late in the evening of 27th February 2012.

A large number of people of both the communities, when they came to attend the rally on 28th at 5pm were shocked to find hundreds of armed police force blocking the venue and within moments, at least 385 JSM activists were rounded up by the police. Out of which 185 have been detained in Shaher Kotada police station and around 200 in Ramol police station situated on the outskirts of Ahmedabad.

JSM unequivocally condemns the high-handed action of the government of preventing the Peace Rally and demand action against the police commissioner and Jt. Commissioner of Police Samsher Singh, who without any reason prevented the people of all communities to come together to raise only one slogan – “SAY NO TO COMMUNAL CONFLICT – NO RIOT EVER AGAIN!”

When the representatives of JSM reached their Paldi office to hold a press conference, they found the office premises cordoned off by hundreds of armed police force so as to prevent the press meet.

SH Iyer
Convenor, JSM

Date: 28th February 2012