Bhim Army founder Chandrashekhar Azad, who had evaded the Delhi Police and joined protesters at Jama Masjid on Friday afternoon, says he will continue his protest till the government rolls back the new citizenship law. Azad surrendered before police in the wee hours of Saturday.
What exactly is the Bhim Army protesting against?
The whole nation is protesting against the Citizenship Amendment Act and the NRC. While whole country is burning, should we remain silent? Bhim Army stands for the protection of the Constitution which is bestowed by B R Ambedkar. We will not allow the division of the country.
What will be your next step?
Our protest is not over yet. Lakhs of people are assembled here (near Jama Masjid). We are getting calls from all over the country as well as outside of the country. People are supporting us. We will continue our protests.
The government says that CAA does not apply to Indian citizens, they will be not be affected?
I don’t believe the people who lie. All the slogans of Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Home Minister Amit Shah are lies. What happened during the notebandi (demonetisation)? Many people died. Who is responsible for their deaths? Today, six people have died in Uttar Pradesh? Who will take responsibility of their death? People do not trust them now. Why are they doing NRC? Muslims are patriots. They did not protest when the government abrogated Article 370. When the verdict in the Babri Masjid demolition case was pronounced, they did not protest. They did not protest when the Parliament passed the tripal talaq law. But now, we will protest the undemocratic move of this government.
Union Home Minister Amit Shah wants a nationwide NRC. What is your view on it?
He (Amit Shah) is holding a constitutional post. But whatever he is saying is not democratic — it’s dictatorship. You cannot divide this country based on (Vinayak Damodar) Savarkar model. CAA-NRC are aimed at dividing the people of the country. We will not allow that.
Why did you choose Jama Masjid as the protest site?
There is a mazar (mausoleum) of one of the greatest freedom fighters, Maulana Abul Kalam Azad, here. This is the place from where he challenged the British. There can be no better place to protest against an undemocratic government. A lot of people, especially women, are coming out and taking part in protests.
Till when you will continue the protest?
Until the government takes back CAA and its decision to conduct NRC.
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