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AAP meets Guj Guv over delay in clearance for Kerjiwal’s rally

Statesman News Service |

Jittery over the delay in getting the police permission for the maiden rally of AAP national convener Arvind Kejriwal in Surat next month, the Gujarat unit of the party today sought intervention of Governor O P Kohli, even as it accused the state government of "muzzling" the voice of "dissent" over fear of losing power.

In a memorandum submitted to the Governor, AAP said the BJP-led state government is not granting them permission "out of fear of losing their ground ahead of Assembly polls."

AAP MLA Gulab Singh, also the party in-charge for Gujarat, alleged that despite repeated requests and follow-ups, police have not granted permission for the Delhi Chief Minister’s rally in Surat, which AAP wants to hold on October 16.

"Gujarat government has been muzzling all the voices of dissent since long. Our Constitution has given us the right to peacefully protest against wrong decisions of any government. But, BJP government here has taken away that right from people, as they are afraid of losing power.

"Since last one year, BJP government has tried hard to stop all our public programmes by not granting permission. It also happened with Patels, OBCs and dalit agitators. How can democracy function if government snatches people’s right to raise their voice? This is totally against the spirit of Constitution," stated the memorandum.

AAP claimed it had sought permission from Surat police for Kejriwal’s rally almost a fortnight back.

"Even after 15 days have passed, police has neither granted us permission, nor has given us any clear reason for holding back the permission. October 16 is approaching fast and we need time for preparations. If we will be denied permission, it will be an absolute injustice to a political party as well as a huge blow to democracy," Singh stated.

Requesting Governor Kohli’s intervention, AAP said, "This government has forgot all the democratic values for their political interests. We urge you to request them to fulfil their duties and obey these values."