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Social Media Activist Bhaana Sidhu Faces Police Brutality in Punjab

Punjab chief minister Bhagwant Mann. Photo: Government of Punjab (file photo)

Punjab chief minister Bhagwant Mann. Photo: Government of Punjab (file photo)

Social Media Activist Bhaana Sidhu Faces Police Brutality in Punjab

Today, with multiple protests by different sections of society, Punjab is witnessing a state of complete unrest.

By Rakesh Raman

A number of protests are taking place in Punjab, as a social media activist Bhaana Sidhu has been facing police brutality for raising voice against corruption and misgovernance in the state.

Reports suggest that after getting bail on January 25 in a case in which he was arrested by the Ludhiana police on January 20, a new case has been registered against him so that he should not come out of the jail.

The supporters of Bhaana Sidhu allege that these are politically motivated cases filed at the behest of Punjab chief minister (CM) Bhagwant Mann whose incompetence was being exposed by Bhaana Sidhu. They also allege that Bhaana Sidhu was beaten up mercilessly by police when he was in police custody.[ Click here to watch a related video. ]

Last year in May also, a number of social activists and civil rights groups held a public rally in the Barnala region of Punjab and announced the launch of a statewide protest against the police excesses.

According to a Hindustan Times report of May 15, Bhaana Sidhu was arrested by the Barnala police when he came back from Australia where he had made some remarks against a policeman’s corruption.

A close aide of social activist Lakha Sidhana, Bhaana Sidhu has been raising his voice against the wrong policies and brutal actions of CM Bhagwant Mann. 

Now a number of leading Punjab activists have planned to hold a big protest to get Bhaana Sidhu released from police custody. Lakha Sidhana said that CM Bhagwant Mann is unleashing police terror against all those people who criticize his government.

[ Also Read: ਕੀ ਭਗਵੰਤ ਮਾਨ ਪੰਜਾਬ ਵਿੱਚ ਅੱਤਵਾਦ ਦੇ ਦਿਨ ਵਾਪਸ ਲੈ ਕੇ ਆਉਣਗੇ? ]

[ Also Read: ਅਰਵਿੰਦ ਕੇਜਰੀਵਾਲ ਅਤੇ ਭਗਵੰਤ ਮਾਨ ਦਿੱਲੀ ਅਤੇ ਪੰਜਾਬ ਨੂੰ ਕਿਵੇਂ ਬਰਬਾਦ ਕਰਦੇ ਹਨ ]

He added that Bhagwant Mann is not only attacking the freedom of speech rights of ordinary people in the state, but he is also becoming a major threat to the press freedom as local journalists are not allowed to work freely.

Last year, U.S. Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) expressed deep concern over increasing human rights violations in Punjab, which has a large number of people belonging to the Sikh minority community. Ms. Omar urged the U.S. administration to protect the human rights of all, particularly the rights of all religious and ethnic minorities.

Today, with multiple protests by different sections of society, Punjab is witnessing a state of complete unrest while Bhagwant Mann – an illiterate politician who used to work in vulgar comedy shows – has completely failed in running the government.

People accuse Bhagwant Mann of working as a puppet of his Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) leader Arvind Kejriwal and other AAP politicians in Delhi. The protesters say that they will not wait for 5 years until the next state election and will get the AAP government removed before the election if it fails to work honestly.

Bhagwant Mann and Kejriwal are squandering huge public money of Punjab Government on their excursions and advertisements in Punjab and other states to promote their party and their own images with fake publicity campaigns.

But the people of Punjab are suffering under unprecedented political corruption, lawlessness, unemployment, drug addiction, mafia culture, youth exodus, religious fundamentalism, and state oppression.

Therefore, Lakha Sidhana and his supporters said that they will intensify their agitation against the Bhagwant Mann government which is being controlled remotely from Delhi by Kejriwal.

By Rakesh Raman, who is a national award-winning journalist and social activist. He is the founder of the humanitarian organization RMN Foundation which is working in diverse areas to help the disadvantaged and distressed people in the society.

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