Chandigarh, August 9th: The administration was on 5th July, 2010 sent an intimation letter,detailing the entire event of ‘National Anthem Ceremony at Open Hand Monument’, by me, Dr Gaurav Chhabra.
It is unfortunate that the administration perceived a letter of intimation send by citizens for peaceful gathering on the day of Independence at an open space as a permission request.
Reciting the National Anthem and paying tribute to martyrs of the Indian Freedom Struggle at the Open hand Monument and Martyr Memorial at Capital Complex, Sector 1, Chandigarh is matter of Fundamental Rights (under article 19) and a Fundamental duty as per under Article 51(a) of the Constitution.
It is amusing to know that the Hon’ble Punjab and Haryana High Court’s independence day cannot co-exist with the peaceful assembly of citizens. The refusal of permission to recite the National Anthem on the day of Independence is shameful and a National shame.
Kindly take a note that the administration was not asked for advice on alternative venues, also the open hand complex was envisaged as being a space for the common man to gather and contemplate. The area does not come under the boundary of high court or assembly . The Martyr’s memorial at the capital complex, which lies in a state of neglect and was never completed was made as a tribute to the Martyr’s of Indian Freedom struggle . The war memorial which Chandigarh Admin.is ‘Advising’ is dedicated to Martyrs of Wars after independence only.
Hence administration is again intimated that citizens of the city will be gathering at the Open hand memorial on 15th of August at 10 am to recite the national anthem. The judges, being citizens, are welcome to join the celebrations, as we too shall be maintaining law and order at the Capitol Complex venue.
Also , Administration should use this opportunity to educate itself with the vision of Chandigarh and the importance and intent of the Open Hand Monument , so that it does not come up with whimsical decisions like these ever again.