City joins protest against lynchings

Protest songs, poems, pledge against communal violence

City residents, young and old, came together in front of the Secretariat on Wednesday evening to protest against mob lynchings of Muslims and Dalits. The protest movement under the banner of #NotInMyName was part of simultaneous protests across several cities in the country and abroad.

The movement began as a response to the murder of 16-year-old Hafiz Junaid by a group of men inside a train on June 23. In response to a facebook post by Delhi-based filmmaker Saba Dewan calling for a protest at Delhi’s Jantar Mantar, several independent protest movements sprung up in various cities. “Why can’t all of us as citizens repulsed by the violence get together in protest next week at Jantar Mantar under the banner - Not in my Name,” said the facebook post.

In Thiruvananthapuram, the call for protest was given by Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU) professor Anu Arunima, a native of the city.

“There has been an intense outpouring of anger across the country following the series of lynchings over beef. Everyone wanted to get out and do something. The movement was a spontaneous result of discussions which followed last week’s lynching. In recent times, there have been strong protest movements by students of Indian universities. This was followed by the protests after the flogging of Dalits in Una, which I believe was a major turning point. More such mobilisations will have to happen on the ground,” she said.

No political affiliations

Most of the participants said that they were neutral and not affiliated to any political party. The banners read ‘Stop lynching’, ‘No to communal violence’, ‘My Food, My Freedom’.

“We desperately needed some noise against these series of atrocities, which we have witnessed in the past three years. This cannot be allowed to go on unquestioned. It’s the duty of us citizens to speak up when it matters,” says Arjun Cherian, a law student, who travelled all the way from Kottayam to participate in the protest.

“I felt that today I had to come out on the street in solidarity with all the innocents who were lynched,” said Jerry Chacko, an engineer.

The evening was filled with protest songs, poems and a pledge against communal violence.

The protest ended with the rousing protest song Hum Dekhenge, penned by Faiz Ahmed Faiz.

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Printable version | Feb 27, 2020 6:46:13 PM |

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