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Remove ban on entering Sachivalaya, activists to Gujarat governor; lodge complaint to NHRC, to agitate on Oct 2

By Our Representative
A group of social activists led by Dalit rights leader Kirit Rathod has sought the intervention of Gujarat governor OP Kohli to lift the restrictions imposed on individuals entering Gandhinagar Sachivalaya, the seat of political power in Gujarat. In a representation to the governor, they have particularly taken strong exception to a black list, claimed to have been prepared by the state government, containing names of individuals who should not be allowed to enter the Sachivalaya.
Insisting that the all those individuals who wish to enter Sachivalaya should be allowed in, the representation says, the black list is "unconstitutional", and the state government has no right to put such a ban. Referring to how he and his colleagues were recently told on the gates of Sachivalaya that they were "blacklisted", Rathod, accompanied by Kantilal Parmar, Subodh Kumud, Chandu Maheria, Romel Sutariya and others, told Kohli that they had not done any unlawful activity, and they believed in non-violent struggle for their rights.
Rathod said, they were barred despite the fact that in a Right to Information (RTI) reply he was told by DySP (Secretariat, Security Branch), Gandhinagar, that no government ban has been imposed on any person to enter Sachivalaya, nor is there any circular or resolution regarding the ban. "So, by whose order and why the entrance into Sachivalaya is not permitted?" he asked.
Rathod alleged, there have been cases when members of Dalit and other marginalized communities are not only not issued pass to enter Sachivalaya, but are taken to the Sector 7 police station, where they are detained. The harassment becomes particularly acute during the visit of a VVIP, he added. "If the ban on entering Sachivalaya is not removed, Rathod said, activists would hold a non-violent agitation on October 2, Gandhi Jayanti, at Sabarmati Ashram in Ahmedabad.

Complaint to NHRC

Meanwhile, Kantilal Parmar, one of the Dalit rights leaders who met the Gujarat governor, has lodged a complaint with National Human Rights Commission chairman HL Dattu against the "discriminatory" attitude of the state government towards them, asking him to intervene in the matter and give necessary directions to the Gujarat government in this regard.

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