Updated: December 21, 2019 10:02:28 am
At Shaheen Bagh, the southern-most colony in Delhi’s Okhla, over 1,000 locals have been sitting on the road since Sunday night, protesting against the new citizenship law and implementation of NRC. This meant a majority of shops were shut and the stretch connecting Noida to Delhi through Kalindi Kunj was closed.
Throughout the gathering, the sentiment was similar: “Ye Hindu Muslim ki ladai nahi hai, ye sahi aur galat ki ladai hai (This is not a fight between two religions; it is a fight about right and wrong).” Most protesters, especially women, dissuaded everyone from giving the issue a communal tone.
“The Constitution never divides people on the basis of religion. We are living here by choice and not by birth. At present, the Constitution is in danger and we want to fight that. This is a peaceful protest and we will continue until the government rolls back CAA,” said Mahid Begum, who has been living here for 25 years.
Like her, many women stepped out to protest against the Act. Through the day, food was served and protesters were provided with blankets to brave the cold. In one lane, a group of boys on bikes, holding the Tricolour, shouted slogans of ‘azadi’.
“We don’t want politics, we want love. We don’t want to make it communal,” said Sultan Ahmed, who moved to the area two years ago. Ahmad said he was also getting support from his old neighbours in Tilak Nagar, where he was living earlier.
Due to the protest, the Kalindi Kunj road has remained shut since December 15. The DND has seen traffic jams owing to this.
During daily meetings of Delhi Police with members of RWA and Aman Committees, DCP (South East) Chinmoy Biswal appealed to them about getting the stretch vacated. Biswal said, “We are intervening in the matter through local people, as we do not want a confrontation. This protest on the highway is a big inconvenience to the locals there. Members of RWAs and Aman Committees are meeting them and trying to convince them.”
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