Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) President Sukhbir Singh Badal was not allowed to carry out his protest march against the farm laws after 11 am on Friday in view of the existing Covid-induced guidelines, a senior Delhi Police officer said.
Deputy Commissioner of Police, Deepak Yadav, had written a letter to Badal and SAD spokesperson Daljeet Singh Cheema on September 15, informing them not to carry out any protest march in the national capital on September 17 (Friday).
According to a government order, all gatherings, including political, are prohibited up to September 30 throughout the National Capital Territory of Delhi to prevent and control the Covid pandemic.
In the letter, the DCP had also mentioned that Section 144 of the CrpC is already enforced in the area of New Delhi district.
However, the Akali Dal did not pay heed to the DCP’s letter and held demonstrations near the Parliament to mark their protest against the completion of a year of the enactment of the three contentious farm laws.
Since Friday morning, hundreds of protesters, including Akali Dal leaders, marched on Delhi’s Rakabganj Road. The leaders also addressed the workers and termed the protest as the ‘Black Friday Protest’.
Akali Dal chief Badal and and his wife and Lok Sabha MP Harsimrat Kaur Badal were among several Akali leaders who were detained by the Delhi Police.
The DCP, in the letter accessed by IANS, had categorically stated that legal action will be initiated under the relevant sections of the Indian penal Code, Epidemic Diseases Act, and Disaster Management Act in case of violation of the order.
The detainees were brought to the Parliament Street police station before being released later.
“We were arrested by the Delhi Police, and after sometime the Magistrate released us. We have given our memorandum so that our message reaches the government,” Sukhbir Badal told IANS.
The Akali Dal submitted a memorandum to Prime Minister Narendra Modi through the Executive Magistrate. Besides asking for repealing the ‘black’ farm laws, it also demanded a commitment from the Centre that the farmers would be consulted before bringing in any legislation affecting their lives.