Yuva Hunkar: Youth leaders come together to protest against Modi’s policies
The leaders said that the rally was just the beginning of many such demonstrations to be held across the country
The Yuva Hunkar rally, whose organisation activists claimed was clouded by a misinformation campaign by the Delhi police and the media, saw young leaders belonging to various outfits coming together to protest against what was dubbed by them as the Modi government’s anti-people policies. Despite approach routes to Parliament Street being blocked for vehicles and heavy security personnel deployment, around 1,200 people turned out for the rally. Several leaders including the newly elected MLA from Vadgam in Gujarat Jignesh Mevani, JNU student leaders Umar Khalid, Shehla Rashid and Kanhaiya Kumar, Krishak Mukti Sangram Samiti (KMSS) leader Akhil Gogoi, Aligarh Muslim University Women’s College President Naba, Bhim Army Chief Vinay Ratan, Lucknow University student leader Pooja Shukla along with lawyer and former Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) leader Prashant Bhushan took the dais to demand the release of Bhim Army’s founder Chandrashekhar Azad and raise their voice against the government’s failure to generate employment, affordable education opportunities and against lack of gender justice.
“Modi ji you should tell us about what happened to the promises made by you on development and employment. We are fighting for our rights, we do not want hatred. Give youths employment and education.”
Mevani took the stage raising Azadi slogans and told the crowd, “We believe in the democracy, in the Constitution, and its essence. You (BJP) can attack us, and verbally abuse us. Despite that, we will talk about the Constitution and hum the tune of love.” He also said that the National Democratic Alliance (NDA) government posed a threat to the country’s democracy and Constitution.
Bhushan raised questions over electoral bonds and party funding and demanded more transparency. JNU student leader Khalid, on the other hand, held the government accountable on its unfulfilled promises: “Modi ji you should tell us about what happened to the promises made by you on development and employment. We are fighting for our rights, we do not want hatred. Give youths employment and education.”
Former JNU students’ union president Kanhaiya Kumar asked the crowd to avoid retaliating against oppression with violence: “No matter how angry they make you, do not indulge in violence. When they come with lathis, prepare your backs, stand together but don’t forget, this cycle of violence can only be won with love.”
When Rashid took the stage, she slammed the Delhi police for spreading misinformation regarding the rally’s venue. The Delhi police had claimed that the permission was not granted for the rally in view of the NGT orders and the organisers were advised to go to an alternate site, which they refused to accept. The JNU student leader later tweeted, “Rather than asking us why we are going ahead with the rally ‘despite not having permission,’ media should ask the Delhi police why they kept lying about cancellation of permission. Thanks to everyone for the terrific turnout amid lies and conspiracy.”
The youth leaders said that the rally was just the beginning of many such demonstrations to be held across the country by young leaders against the current government’s policies and activities.