Ekramul Molla, TDN World, Kolkata: Peaceful protest against the contentious CAA–NRC-NPR has been going on in more than 271 places across India and 16 places in Bengal. The wave first raised by the women in Shaheen Bagh, Delhi, has hit other parts of the country, and rural places as well. Jamia students also played a crucial role behind. When the government is adamant to crackdown these peaceful movements, unleashing various mode of state-repression, the women of the country come up more resolute composure to intensify non-violent protests. In Uttar Pradesh, Yogi Adityanath government takes retaliative measures to put an end to the protests by implcating people in false cases, putting up hoardings of the anti-CAA protesters, sealing properties but nothing could deter the women. They are up on streets, protests with unwavering determination. Initially, the north-east states waged protests, demonstrations. Following the example of north-east
the anti-CAA movement spread in several other parts of the country.But, Shaheen Bagh protest has created a positive vibe among the people of the country, remained inspiration to scores of other Shaheen Baghs, set up to oppose CAA–NRC-NPR.
Protest is also observed in various parts of Bengal. The Park Circus remain the epicenter. The Shaheen Bagh model has reached in the remote villages as well. In 16 sites dharna is carried out. Apart from Park Circus, anti-CAA dharna is being carried out at Zakaria street, Nawab Ali Park, Khiderpore, Kacchi Sarak, Metiabruz, Rajabazar Tram depot, Kalabagan, Belgachia, Paik Para. Kamarhati, Asansol, Howrah Pilkhana, Ghushri, Howrah, Plassey,Nadia, Naoda and Jangipur, Murshidabad, Bhangar, South 24 Parganas. Not any political organization, the common people take the lead in these protests. Women are out on the streets, staying in makeshift tents, for forty days, sixty days. Overlooking cold, rain, heat, and physical illness they are taking part in dharna, spontaneously. Dharna was staged at Berhampore, Murshidabad, and it continued for several weeks. Anija Bewa, who hails from this city, told TDN World on February 25, “My husband expired two days before Indira Gandhi’s death. But, now it is said that we will be driven out! We will leave, simply, what do you think? Among hundreds other Ladli Bibi (60), Manjura Bewa (50) were also there in the dharna. This dharna didn’t last for long due to few issues. But, sit-in protests in other places is going on till today. After this long days, people are not tired, rather they are putting up fresh protests, dharna manch, the number is growing day by day.
Farha, a resident of CIT road, Kolkata, took to streets for the first time. A septuagenarian dadi from Topsia came out on street with her little grandson. She said, “I will not take the name -NPR. I think it is an insult to us. The soil of this land know where we belong to. Need we to prove our citizenship!”
Yusuf Raja, studies in class-VI. Two-year-old Mustaq came out holding her elder sister’s hand. Tollygunge’s Koyeli Ganguly, Sharmila raise slogan ” NRC se Azadi”. This protest is no longer circumscribed in the urban ambit, it travelled into the heart of rural villages. Gradually the whole country is as if turning herself into Shaheen Bagh. Besides sitting in dharna protesters at Rajabazar are now observing fast. Speaking to TDN World, anti-NPR activist Prasenjit Bose said, ” The government attempts to conduct Census and NPR at the same time while both are different and subject to separate rules. Actually, it is an endeavour to make people confused. We want the Census to be conducted later. Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Home Minister Amit Shah said that no discussion held over NRC. Then why NPR is to be conducted? No use of NPR other than implementing NRC. NPR is the first step of NRC.
All the protesters have the same opinion. Abu Jafar Molla from Bhangra Shaheen Bagh dharna manch told TDN World, ” We want that the people coming from Bangladesh, Pakistan, Afghanistan are granted citizenship unconditionally. Hence, the amended citizenship act of 2003 need to be repealed. And if it is done then the discriminatory 2019 CAA will become irrelevant. Citizenship cannot be based on religion. Government delebarately brought this law to create controversy. Despite government’s misleading statements people have understood that no need to implement this amended citizenship law. The migrants, asylum-seekers could be granted citizenship, under the existing law, if the citizenship law of 2003 is repealed. And this is nothing new, hundreds of thousands of Hindu people who took refuge to this country, were provided citizenship in this way. By invoking this amended citizenship law the government is unnecessarily courting controversy to suit its votebank politics. In the name of giving citizenship, they want to divide and harass. Therefore, we will be on the streets till the end.”