Dalit organisations are organising a state-wide bandh in Punjab today to protest the demolition of the 15th century Guru Ravidas temple in Delhi. Demanding restoration of the historic temple, the ruling Congress party in the state has also joined the Dalit organisations' stir. Given the state-wide protest, the police have increased security to avoid any untoward situation. State ministers Charanjit Channi and Aruna Chaudhary held discussions with the Dalit bodies and dera heads on Monday, assuring support to carry out peaceful protests.
As per the Tribune, the civil and police administration accompanied leaders as they went to Dera Ballan and met its chief Sant Niranjan Dass. Punjab chief minister Amarinder Singh is scheduled to visit Jalandhar on August 14 and 15, where he would unfurl the Tricolour and visit Jang-e-Azadi Memorial in Kartarpur. To avoid any chaos during his visit, police authorities have been working overtime to ensure security.
Meanwhile, Ravidas Samaj bodies have also extended support to protestors. They have also threatened to hold a protest outside Guru Gobind Singh Stadium, where the CM would attend the Independence Day event.
Bhim Army, a Dalit organisation, has said roads would be blocked for an "indefinite period" till the government assures to restore the temple. Meanwhile, Punjab Cabinet ministers are scheduled to meet Delhi Governor Anil Baijal today. Union Minister of State, Som Prakash, has appealed to protesters to maintain peace. Congress chief Sunil Jakhar told the daily the party would help the Dalit bodies to pursue the case regarding relocation and reconstruction of the historic temple in the Supreme Court.
Edited by Manoj Sharma
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