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Nirupam detained, forced to miss 'pakoda protest'

Friday, February 09, 2018
By Suyash Padate

The Mumbai police swung into action yesterday evening and foiled the agitation organised by Mumbai Congress. The cops detained city Congress unit president Sanjay Nirupam at Girgaum Chowpatty. Nirupam was on his way to participate in a 'pakoda protest' in front of the Mantralaya.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi had recently said, “If a man selling pakodas on the street side, takes home Rs 200 at the end of the day, is that not employment?”

Modi's remark virtually created flutter in political circles. Against the backdrop of this statement, the opposition, led by the Congress, has been trying to corner the Prime Minister and the BJP for the rising unemployment in the country.

Nirupam, who was heading towards the state headquarters, was intercepted by the cops. He was detained and not allowed to join his party members protesting against Modi's remarks.

The Mumbai Congress had planed to launch a 'pakora protest' wherein they set up a stall to fry and sell the snack near Mantralaya. Nirupam, who was en route to the agitation from his residence, was detained at Chowpatty. He got into a heated argument with a police officer who asked him to move his vehicle aside and to step out. He refused to comply and dared the police to arrest him.

After the detention, a furious Nirupam came down heavily on the ruling BJP government, accusing it of denying him fundamental rights by blocking him from going to the protest. Speaking to reporters he said, “This is absolutely unconstitutional and has never happened before. The BJP government is denying my fundamental rights. We will not relent by such tactics. Nevertheless, the pakora agitation will continue till both Modi and Amit Shah take back their statements.”

Two days ago, Nirupam had announced a unique 'pakora agitation', wherein educated or highly qualified unemployed youth would set up a stall to fry and sell pakoras outside Mantralaya. The party had invited the people to come and buy the pakoras prepared by the educated unemployed youth as per the call by Prime Minister Narendra Modi and BJP President Amit Shah.

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