Terming the amended Citizenship Act and the proposed nationwide National Register of Citizens (NRC) as ‘unconstitutional’, thousands of people gathered at Dharna Chowk in Hyderabad Saturday afternoon to protest against the Union government’s citizenship policies.
Under the aegis of the Telangana and Andhra Pradesh joint action committee (JAC), over 40 organisations, associations, and unions of students and professionals came together, calling for united protests to save the Constitution.
Protesters also demanded the state government announce that the National Population Register (NPR) would not be conducted in the Telangana. “We are against dictatorship. We believe in the Constitution and the secular values of this nation. We want equality, freedom to live and everything promised to the citizens of this country,” said a protestor.
“KCR (Chief Minister K Chandrashekar Rao) promised 12 per cent reservation for Muslims but he did not deliver. He maintained silence on the triple talaq issue. He is now silent against NPR. Soon he will come to people for votes and the answer will be given,” said one of the speakers.
Earlier, Joint Commissioner of Police P Viswa Prasad clarified that no rally will be permitted and the permission for the “million march” at Dharna Chowk is only for a protest meeting between 2 pm and 5 pm.
Though police had said not more than a thousand people would be allowed, the swelling crowds forced the authorities to open the nearby NTR grounds to accommodate the swelling crowds.
Earlier, shops around Patherghatti near Charminar remained shut to extend support to the day’s protest meeting.
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