Cong pledges support citizens booked over protesting tree felling
The Congress party has come out in support of the citizens booked for taking part in a peaceful protest to save trees near Sankey Tank.
The party said that all FIRs filed against the citizen would be withdrawn “when the party comes to power” after the upcoming Karnataka assembly elections in May.
After a meeting with the protesters on Sunday, Congress MLA Priyank Kharge said that legal action will be taken against the government officials working on behalf of the BJP.
“We will withdraw all these cases when we come to power. Apart from that, all the officials, working on the behalf of RSS and BJP will be tackled legally. Call this our promise or even warning to these officers,” he said.
A protester, who did not want to be named, said there was pressure from the local MLA, CN Ashwath Narayan, to curb the protests so that flyover work could go ahead.
The MLA didn’t respond to the calls for a response to the allegations.
Sadashivanagar Police station on March 17booked criminal cases against 70 citizens who participated in a march to save trees marked for felling as part of the construction of a flyover along Sankey road in Bengaluru.
On February 19, citizens marched along the footpath without causing any obstruction to traffic as part of the protest.
Following the protest march, the police booked 70 citizens while one of them was summoned for inquiry, said police.
The flyover is expected to connect Sadashivanagar to Malleswaram 18th Cross and is slated to be 150-200 metres long.
According to Sankey Lake Supervisor Gopal, the tenders for the flyover were called following demand from a few residents, and the work began some weeks ago.
Around 70 citizens, including children, gathered at Sankey Tank park clad in black and sat silently briefly.
After a while, they started to walk on the footpath near the lake.
During the protest, children and women were seen hugging the trees demanding to call off the proposal of the construction as it would harm the ecology of the lake.
Police registered an FIR the same day under Sections 143 (unlawful assembly), 341 (wrongful restraint), 283 (obstruction to any person in any public way), and 149 (unlawful assembly with common object) of the Indian Penal Code (IPC). The FIR said that the people gathered had not obtained police permission for assembling.