Anti-CAA protests spread to 11 Bihar districts

Women and girls mostly leading agitations while men manage the crowd

Published - January 24, 2020 01:03 am IST - Patna

CPI leader Kanhaiya Kumar at a protest in Patna.

CPI leader Kanhaiya Kumar at a protest in Patna.

The ongoing protest at Delhi’s Shaheen Bagh against Citizenship (Amendment) Act, National Register of Citizens and National Population Register has spread to at least 11 districts of Bihar.

Protesters, mostly women and girls, can be seen waving national flag, singing patriotic songs and reciting poems at dharnas in parks and open areas. In Patna alone, such protests are being held at three places for the past several days.

‘No party flags’

Politicians and social activists like Brinda Karat, Kanhaiya Kumar, Yogendra Yadav, Tejashwi Yadav and Shivanand Tiwari have addressed the protesters, explaining the implications of the CAA. “We don’t allow them to make political speeches here. They come to lend us support, nothing more,” said Omair Khan, who has been leading one such protest at Gaya’s Shanti Bagh.

“Leaders are welcome to lend us support, but no party flags are allowed,” said Mohd. Sarfaraj, who has been sitting on protest at Patna’s Subzibagh.

Phulwarisharif and Mangal Talab are the other two areas in Patna which have been seeing continuous anti-CAA-NRC-NPR protests. Hundreds of women of all ages and even small children can be seen sitting round-the-clock and raising slogans against Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his government’s “anti-people” policies. Mothers holding babies in their arms discuss how CAA-NPR-NRC would impact their lives, while the men are mostly engaged in managing the crowd.

“We will not move from here till this law is withdrawn by the Modi government even if it takes months or years,” says a veiled Akbari Khatun, who has been coming to the protest site every day for the last 17 days.

Students at forefront

Similar protests are being held in Kishanganj, Katihar, Bettiah in West Champaran, Begusarai, Nalanda, Muzaffarpur, Gopalganj, Gaya, Darbhanga and Madhubani districts. At some places like Bettiah, girl students from Aligarh Muslim University and Jamia Milia Islamia have been leading the protests. “The CAA, NRC and NPR have put a question mark on our identity in our own country. Who are these people to ask us for our identity,” asked a young girl from Darbhanga.

“The day is not far when such protests will spread to all corners of the country and force the government to withdraw this law,” said Nafisa Parveen at Gaya.

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