Monday, July 12, 2010

Protest over 2010 Commonwealth Games in Varanasi

 The members of 'Paharuaa Jann Sangathan', a voluntary organisation, staged a highly charged protest against the Queen's Baton and the hosting of the 2010 Commonwealth Games in India in Uttar Pradesh's Varanasi city on Monday.

The protestors raised slogans against the Queen's Baton and burnt posters and an effigy of Shera, the mascot of the Commonwealth Games.

They said the Queen's Baton is a symbol of slavery and has no meaning for independent countries.

"We are protesting Queen's Baton because it is a symbol of pure slavery. Queen's Baton means the punishment stick of the queen. It has no meaning in any independent and democratic country. The Commonwealth Games are organised for countries, which were the slaves of the British Government at some point of time," said Rajeev Singh, a member of the Paharuaa Jann Sangathan.

"We are protesting these Commonwealth Games in the name of nationalism, and we are protesting because almost 300,000 slum houses were displaced in Delhi, and were not given any shelter by the government," he added.

The protestors further said the money spent on the preparations for the Commonwealth Games should have been spent on the country's development, and in solving problems like the Maoists and militancy.

The initial budget for the Games passed by the Central Government put the total expenditure at Rs 35.66 billion, but with rising costs, the official figure stood at Rs 100 billion as of March 2010.

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