Meerut shuts down, demanding smart city status

Meerut, Sep 15 (IANS) Markets and schools were closed on Tuesday in this prominent city in western Uttar Pradesh to press the demand for the city’s inclusion in the smart cities’ list.

Petrol vends and cinema halls also remained closed for the day, and trade unions and political parties supported the strike. The Bharatiya Janata Party carried out a motorcycle procession.

Naveen Gupta, president of the traders’ combined organisation, said the historical city has been deprived of its right to be included in the list of 100 smart cities of the country.

He accused Meerut’s Lok Sabha member Rajendra Agrawal of not pursuing the case strongly, as a result of which the city lost out.

Glorifying the city’s role in the freedom movement, Gupta said the 1857 mutiny was ignited in Meerut, the city has an army base, and some of the oldest colleges in India.

Indian Medical Association president Sunil Gupta and Petrol Pump Dealers Association president Rakesh Jain said in a joint statement that the state government “conspired” against Meerut and forwarded the name of Rae Bareli to the union government.

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