OROP Protesters Forcibly Evicted From Jantar Mantar, Weeks After NGT Order

| October 30 , 2017 , 14:39 IST

The Jantar Mantar in Delhi, is famous for being a popular protest site, apart from its historical significance. In the wake of the National Green Tribunal (NGT) order banning protests and dharnas in the Jantar Mantar area, police and civic officials on Monday demolished tents and makeshift structures set up by ex-servicemen who had been protesting there for more than 2 years demanding the implementation of the One Rank One Pension (OROP) scheme.

The police and officials carried out the exercise citing the October 5 NGT order banning protests in the Jantar Mantar area. According to police sources, the protestors had been informed about the NGT order in advance and been asked to either leave the premises or bring a stay order.

ALSO READ: Satyagraha At Jantar Mantar For Men’s Rights

The protesting ex-servicemen termed the forced removal "an attempt to throttle our voice in a democracy".

Major General (Retd) Satbir Singh said the police and MCD officials came to Jantar Mantar with a JCB machine and demolished their tents and other temporary structures.

"They also took away our equipment and other stuff like beddings at around 8.45 am. We have been protesting peacefully demanding implementation of the OROP scheme," he said.

"It is an attempt to throttle our voice in a democracy. And, even if there has been any order from any tribunal, there is a way to do things. What they have done is completely unfair and unjust," he added.

ALSO READ: OROP Will Be Implemented Soon, Says VK Singh

Meanwhile, the police have denied the use of any force in the removal of the protestors from Jantar Mantar.

"The OROP protesters were informed about the NGT's order about vacating the Jantar Mantar area and asked to either leave or bring a stay order from the court," a senior police official said.

Following a plea by Varun Seth and other alleging that the protests in the Jantar Mantar area were a major source of noise pollution, the NGT had on October 5 banned all protests and dharnas around Jantar Mantar saying that such activities violated environmental laws.

Subsequently, NGT directed the NDMC to remove all temporary structures and loudspeaker from the area, ordering the NDMC Chairman, police chief and Delhi government to file compliance reports within 5 weeks of October 5.