February 20, 2010
In the August of 2009, the Youth Forum started a campaign to hoist the National Flag on the pylons of the elegant Naini bridge. A signature campaign was started to give a good launch pad to the movement. Thousands of people-students, lawyers, doctors-from all walks of life contributed to the success of the signature campaign. We then met and handed over a memorandum to the District Magistrate, Allahabad to have our will accomplished.
Our initial hurdles got cleared with a supportive Media and without using any traditional political tools-dharna, gherao, hartal. The govt then asked the National Highway Authority of India (NHAI) as to how the Tiranga could be hoisted there.
After nearly 7 months into our movement the Design consultants of NHAI showed its unwillingness. The European engineers of COWI-DIPL, design consultants of Naini bridge gave six points justifying its unwillingness. Of the six stated reasons, none are solid enough to convince us.
The NHAI, it seems is just trying to evade a new responsibility. My team and the youth are of course dejected a bit, but rejuvenated by the jolt. I see this incident to act as a shot in the arm for the Youth Forum. I'm not giving in and will expand to make this youth campaign a mass movement, forcing the NHAI to at least make alternate provisions for hoisting the Tiranga on the graceful bridge.
In fact, not only the Naini bridge, but the Youth Forum would demand for National Flags on all major tourist attractions and monuments, like the Sangam, Rajpath, Mumbai Sea-link, etc.