Parliament Protester’s Mother On Why She Was Upset

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Neelam Azad was caught outside the Parliament.

New Delhi:

One of the four protesters arrested for the parliament security breach was despondent as she was unemployed, her family said. Shocking scenes were witnessed during Zero Hour in Lok Sabha yesterday when two men, Sagar Sharma and D Manoranjan, jumped out of the visitors’ gallery and into the chamber. One of them opened a yellow smoke canister and jumped from desk to desk in an attempt to reach the Speaker’s Chair.

Two other protesters, Neelam Azad and Amol Shinde, were caught releasing colour smoke from an aerosol canister on a road outside the Parliament. Neelam’s family said that she had completed the research programme M.Phil and had also cleared central examinations mandatory to get a teaching job.

“She is highly qualified, but wasn’t getting a job. She was so stressed because of this that she often used to say that I should just die as despite studying so much, I am unable to earn two meals,” her mother Saraswati told reporters.

Neelam’s brother, Ramniwas, told reporters he came to know about the incident from one of their relatives, who dialled him to see the TV.

“She studies in Hisar and is not linked with any political party. We don’t know why she did that. We will know only after meeting her. We came to know about the incident from one of our brothers, who called us. She came home only two days ago,” Ramniwas told reporters.

He said that Neelam had moved to Haryana’s Jind to prepare for competitive exams as she was unable to get a job in Hisar.

“She had completed her BA, MA, M. Phil and had cleared NET, but was still unemployed. She moved to Jind six months ago and was preparing for the Secondary Teachers Eligibility Test,” he said.

Ramniwas said that she has often raised the issue of unemployment at protests. She also took part in the year-long farmers protest near Delhi demanding the repeal of three farm bills.  

Manoranjan’s father, Devaraje Gowda, said if his son has done anything wrong, he should be “hanged”. “The parliament is ours… Many people have built that temple, from Mahatma Gandhi and to Jawaharlal Nehru… It is not acceptable for someone to behave like this with the temple, even if it is my son,” Mr Gowda said.

The Lucknow resident, Sagar Sharma, has four members in his family, including him. He rides an e-rickshaw for a living. His family said he told them that he would be going to Delhi for two days to join a protest.

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