STOCK MARKET BSE NSE

Polish lawmakers pass law restricting rallies

Opposition lawmakers said the rules prevented "street dialogue" and restricted freedom of speech

Published: 14th December 2016 09:11 PM  |   Last Updated: 14th December 2016 09:11 PM   |  A+A-

Anti-government demonstrators attend a rally in Warsaw on the 35th anniversary of the martial law on December 13. (Photo | AFP)

Anti-government demonstrators attend a rally in Warsaw on the 35th anniversary of the martial law on December 13. (Photo | AFP)

By AFP

WARSAW: Poland's conservative populist-dominated parliament has passed a law restricting public meetings which has been slammed by the opposition as being anti-democratic, media reports said Wednesday.

The legislation, passed late on Tuesday, introduces the concept of "periodic meetings" for rallies organised repeatedly in the same place and on the same date, giving such gatherings priority over other meetings.

Unrelated meetings must take place at least 100 metres (yards) away from any meeting designated "periodic".

The ruling rightwing Law and Justice (PiS) party said the law would boost the security of participants at all gatherings by preventing clashes.

But opposition lawmakers said the rules prevented "street dialogue" and restricted freedom of speech.

They claim the law will allow PiS to to organise a monthly meeting, protected from counter-protests, to commemorate the 2010 Smolensk plane crash.

Ninety-six people died including president Lech Kaczynski, the twin brother of PiS head Jaroslaw Kaczynski.

Last Saturday, the 80th such ceremony outside the presidential palace in Warsaw was slightly disturbed by an opposition rally.

The bill that was ultimately adopted did however shed provisions that would have given priority to rallies organised by the state and religious organisations.

Opposition politicians and rights activtists claimed that the original proposals restricted fundamental rights and freedoms.

Tens of thousands of Poles took to the streets across the country to protest the PiS government on Tuesday, the 35th anniversary of the martial law crackdown in communist-ruled Poland.

Stay up to date on all the latest World news with The New Indian Express App. Download now

Comments

Disclaimer : We respect your thoughts and views! But we need to be judicious while moderating your comments. All the comments will be moderated by the newindianexpress.com editorial. Abstain from posting comments that are obscene, defamatory or inflammatory, and do not indulge in personal attacks. Try to avoid outside hyperlinks inside the comment. Help us delete comments that do not follow these guidelines.

The views expressed in comments published on newindianexpress.com are those of the comment writers alone. They do not represent the views or opinions of newindianexpress.com or its staff, nor do they represent the views or opinions of The New Indian Express Group, or any entity of, or affiliated with, The New Indian Express Group. newindianexpress.com reserves the right to take any or all comments down at any time.

flipboard facebook twitter whatsapp