New Delhi: In a major development, one of the roads which was barricaded by the Delhi Police due to the ongoing Shaheen Bagh protest, was on Saturday evening opened by the protesters, even as negotiations took place between the agitators and the Supreme Court-appointed interlocutors for the fourth day running. Also Read - 'Dil ka Raasta Sabse Bada Hai': Shaheen Bagh Mediators Win Protesters' Heart
Notably, the Noida-Kalindi Kunj road had been closed since the anti-Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) began at Shaheen Bagh in December. During their talks with the interlocutors, the protesters had pointed out that the said road had been blocked by the police and can be opened to ease the flow of traffic. Also Read - Shaheen Bagh Stir: 'Open Roads, Make Way to Hearts,' Interlocutors to Protesters; Latter Blames Police
In a statement, however, the Delhi Police said, “A little earlier today, Road number 9 was reopened by a group of protestors, but later it was closed by another group. Again, a group of protestors have reopened a small stretch; however, still there’s no clarity if all protestors have consent on this.” Also Read - Disrupting Public Life is an Act of Terror: Kerala Guv on Shaheen Bagh Protesters
The development comes just a day after the road was briefly was opened by the police but was later barricaded again. The opening of the road will decongest traffic heading towards Faridabad.
The Shaheen Bagh protesters have put forward a series of demands to the interlocutors. These include, among others, police protection in the wake of a shooting incident at the protest site earlier this month, withdrawal of cases against Jamia Millia Islamia students as well as the protesters themselves, a stay on the National Population Register (NPR) etc.
On February 17, the apex court had appointed a three-member panel, comprising senior counsels Sanjay Hegde and Sadhana Ramachandran, as well as former Chief Information Commissioner (CIC) Wajahat Habibullah, to talk to the protesters and convince them to relocate to another site. This was after a plea was filed in the top court against the protesters illegally occupying the road, leading to inconvenience to lakhs of commuters.
The next hearing in the case will take place on February 24.