The Students’ Federation of India (SFI) and the Democratic Youth Federation of India (DYFI), frontal organisations of the ruling CPM, have decided to organise a massive rally on October 13 during the Monday morning rush hour to protest Justice Amitava Lala’s verdict restricting rallies.
Announcing the decision, DYFI state secretary Asitanga Ganguly said on Saturday that frontal organisations from other Left units, too, would join the rally from Calcutta University to Rani Rashmoni Road.
The SUCI, too, has decided to hold a mass protest convention on October 10 at University Institute Hall. SUCI secretary Prabhas Ghosh told newspersons that they would adopt different programmes against the high court verdict.
“We strongly condemn Justice Lala’s verdict which, in our opinion, is an attack on democracy. We shall by all means try to resist any attempt to suppress democracy. Different programmes will be launched across the state to build up people’s opinion. The details will be finalised at the October 10 convention,” Ghosh said.
The SUCI secretary said they had not been invited to attend the Left Front’s convention on the same issue at Mahajati Sadan on October 8.
“We urged the Left Front and even spoke to CPM state secretary Anil Biswas to hold a joint convention involving all Left-inclined political parties as the matter is very serious, but we did not get any reply. It would have been better had we jointly taken to the streets,” Ghosh said.
“We also invited the Congress and the Trinamul Congress to come forward for a strong protest but it elicited no response. So, we have decided to go it alone,” he added.
The DYFI secretary said they would mobilise at least 10,000 students and youths for the October 13 rally.
“The rally will reach Rani Rashmoni Road through Bidhan Sarani and Lenin Sarani. We will hold a mass meeting there and lead a delegation to chief minister Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee to submit a memorandum,” Ganguly explained.
Asked how they will react if they were stopped by the police for defying the high court order, Ganguly said the police barricade would be broken. “Let the police arrest all of us and send us to jail. We are ready to go to jail for defying an undemocratic court order,” he said.
The Opposition political parties, however, are yet to chalk out a protest plan. Senior Trinamul Congress leader and leader of the Opposition in the Assembly Pankaj Banerjee said they had not planned any programme.
“We shall take up the decision at our working committee meeting to be held after the Pujas at the instance of our chairperson Mamata Banerjee,’’ he said.
The Congress will wait to get the court order in hand, said party spokesperson Manas Bhuniya.