Cities erupt over Citizenship Amendment Act, see mass outpouring of crowds


By Pankaj Upadhyay in Mumbai

Thousands of protesters gathered at the August Kranti Maidan on Thursday raising their voices against the Citizenship Amendment Act. Workers from political parties, students and many Bollywood personalities also participated.

Among others who stood out at the protest site were Swara Bhaskar, Farhan Akhtar, Sushant Singh, Huma Qureshi and Kaizad Kotwal.

Yes I believe that many more people from Bollywood should join such protests and highlight the cause, said Kaizad Kotwal.

Sushant Singh who was among the first Bollywood celebrities to arrive at the protest venue said that he was trying to understand the whole scenario before he arrives at some conclusion. I am disturbed right now. The anger among the people is visible. So I am here to understand more before I can formulate some final assessment, he said.

Swara Bhaskar said that the government should concentrate on welfare policies for the people rather than draw out such policies which divide people on religious lines. I am a Hindu but I don’t have a birth certificate. So what do you do now? This is discriminatory from the very beginning. You cannot say CAA and NRC are different. This government was chosen by the people to act for the betterment of the people and they can be brought down by the same people, she said.

Farhan Akhtar arrived with his girlfriend Shibani Dandekar and stayed for some ten minutes. This act isn’t good for the nation. It’s not just about Muslims but in the days to come this will create major problems for the entire nation, he said.

While there were many citizens who seemed well informed about the issue there were many who had no idea about the matter. Many seemed confused between CAA and NRC.


By Indrajit Kundu in Kolkata

West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on Thursday challenged the BJP to conduct a nationwide UN referendum over the controversial Citizenship (Amendment) Act.

We want to see how many are for CAA and how many are against it. If the majority does not agree to it will you resign? Banerjee said.

The TMC supremo went to add that such a referendum must be carried out by an impartial independent organization like the United Nation.

Addressing her fourth consecutive anti-CAA protest meet in Kolkata, Banerjee urged all opposition political parties bury their differences to join forces against the BJP regime.

Reacting sharply to the CM’s call for a referendum, Bengal Governor Jagdeep Dhankar tweeted: I appeal CM Mamata Bannerjee to please withdraw her reported statement… We must never compromise our nationalism. Nation has always to be first. Am sure CM Mamata Bannerjee will heed my humble request and withdraw forthwith her reported statement. Am distressed, pained and hurt as a citizen of this great nation at such a statement, he further stated.


By Gopi Maniar in Gandhinagar

Several civil rights organisation called bandh on Thursday against the Citizenship Amendment Act and NRC.

Demonstration held against CAA in several parts of Gujarat like Ahmedabad, Palanpur, Godhra and Morbi. The effects of the demonstration could be seen in Muslim-dominant areas.

Despite the heavy deployment of police in several places of Ahmedabad, the protest turned violent in the city. During the demonstration, ruckus was created at Sardar Baug area of Ahmedabad. Police resorted to lathi-charge to control the mob.

The demonstration turned violent in Shah Alam area of Ahmedabad. The mob pelted stones at police.

To control the situation in Shah Alam Area, police resorted to lathi-charge and tear gas shells. In Shah Alam’s violence, 20 police personnel including media persons were injured.

To control the situation, the administration has suspended city bus services in affected areas like Ajit Mill, Sarangpur and others.

Amid protest across the country against CAA and NRC, Gujarat CM Vijay Rupani said: People are satisfied with this Bill. It will not affect any Indian Citizen whether they are Hindu or Muslim. The opposition is doing all these things.


By Akshaya Nath in Chennai

Chennai saw a massive protest on Thursday with over 1,000 people from different walks of life gathered at Chennai’s Valluvar Kottam to show their solidarity against CAA.

This act is against the interest of the people and it is dividing people on the basis of religion. Those who think this is the end, need to remember that this is just the beginning. We thank the youngsters who have come forward to lead these protests, said classical musician and Ramon Magsaysay award winner TM Krishna. He also added that Section 144 in Bangalore and arrest of Historian Ramchandra Guha is unacceptable.

Actor Siddharth who participated in the protest on Thursday, said: CAA gives them the right to decide who is persecuted and who isn’t on the basis of religion. Look at what is happening in Kashmir. MPs are under house arrest and it’s saying the situation is normal. This is a draconian law and we should keep protesting. Protesting is our right. I’ve told the protesters also not to lose their calm and also watch what they are saying cause anything can be twisted now. We will have to stay together to oppose this.

With the Supreme Court refusing to stay the implementation of CAA and saying that it will hear the 59 petitions on January 22, the situation on the roads of the country, especially colleges and university seem to only aggravate.

Makkal Needhi Maiam founder and actor Kamal Haasan went and met the protesting students of Madras University from the outside the gates of the campus on Wednesday.

After the meeting, Hassan said: I have asked them to continue. There is no bill that is so big that cannot be retracted.

He also announced that his party Makkal Needhi Maiam will be participating in the anti-CAA rally by DMK and its allies on December 23 in Chennai. CM EPS justified the party’s stand of supporting the CAA.


By Ashish Pandey in Hyderabad

Hyderabad on Thursday witnessed protests over the Citizenship Amendment Act and National Register of Citizens. The city has been witnessing sporadic protests by various organisations for the last few days.

Police have denied permission to any kinds of protest over CAA and NRC but hundreds hit the road defying the police appeal.

While around 100 students of Hyderabad Central University were detained by Cyberabad police and shifted to Moinabad police station at city’s outskirts, hundreds of protesters including women detained hear historic Charminar while they tried taking out a march.

Around 300 protesters were detained by Hyderabad police near Exhibition Ground when they arrived there to participate in a march till Public Garden which was organised by the Left Organisations.

In the evening, several people gathered at Neckless Road on the banks of Hussain Sagar lake and held a peaceful protest against the BJP government and Police detain activists in Hyderabad on Thursday. CAA and countrywide NRC.



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