Activists and nearly 100 elderly citizens who marched to the PMs office on Friday to present their demands to Prime Minister Dr Manmohan Singh were stopped,arrested and later released from Parliament Street jail. The activists included Pune-based activist Baba Adhav,Aruna Roy and others.
Poornima Chikermane from Pension Parishad who was also among the 15 activists from Pune to be arrested and released later said for the past 11 days,hundreds of poor elderly citizens have been braving the cold by camping at Jantar Mantar,New Delhi. They are in the national capital to press their demand for universal pensions for the elderly poor. Senior citizens who have travelled from almost every state have been urging the PM to meet them to understand their plight. We were stopped at some distance from the PMs office. So we all sat right there in peaceful protest. Yet Section 144 was used to arrest us and we were taken to jail, said Chikermane.
Some of the demands include scrapping the difference between APL and BPL citizens and pension as a universal right,pension amount must be at least 50 per cent of the minimum wage or Rs 2,000,whichever is higher. Pensions must be indexed to inflation.