Violent protests spread to New Delhi over India's new citizenship law

Thursday, 19 Dec, 2019

On Tuesday, Home Minister Amit Shah, who shepherded the Citizenship Amendment Act through the Parliament last week, defended it and ruled out any possibility of repealing the law.

Police spokesman M.S. Randhawa said 10 people were arrested during Sunday's protest from Jamia Nagar, a Muslim neighbourhood near the university.

However, in light of the nationwide protests and the Supreme Court receiving some 59 petitions, the SC will be examining the constitutional validity of the CAA.

The law's passage last week follows a contentious process in northeastern India's Assam state meant to weed out people who entered the country illegally known as the National Register of Citizens, or NRC.

He stated in his tweets that the bill was the latest of Modi's attempts to promulgate his supremacist agenda, "starting with illegal annexation and continuing siege of IOJK [India-held Jammu and Kashmir]; then stripping two million Indian Muslim in Assam of citizenship, setting up internment camps; now the passage of Citizenship Amendment Law; all this accompanied by mob lynching of Muslims and other minorities in India". "This is Hindu nationalists declaring, 'We want to make India great again'".

Some state officials have accused Banerjee of wasting public money on TV campaign ads criticizing the law instead of making sure the police have enough resources to curb state-wide arson related to the protests.

Authorities have imposed internet blackouts and used force to shut down rallies and sit-ins, but protesters have vowed to keep up their fight until the law is revoked.

That didn't sit well with some and has led to protests throughout the Asian nation. Witnesses say police stormed the campus with riot control weapons, including batons and tear gas, injuring more than 200 people, according to media reports.

Some Indian Muslims fear it's a means by which Hindu nationalists can put them in detention or deport them from the country.

Critics note that about 1.4 million of the 2 million who could not prove citizenship are either Hindu or of some other non-Muslim religious minority - and so will be protected by the new citizenship act.

"We were forced by the police to sign a bond that we would not take part in any protest henceforth but we denied doing so", a student who was released after she was detained for 3.5 hours in SJ Park police station, Bengaluru for participating in CAA Protests said.

He urged the Pakistani government to deal with the issue through diplomatic efforts.

Get the Monitor Stories you care about delivered to your inbox. However, it has kept out Muslim immigrants from applying for citizenship.

But in the meantime, she says she will now join the protests - not so much to battle against something, but to stand up for something.