Kerala’s ruling Left Democratic Front (LDF) has invoked a 620-km long human chain, stretching from Kasaragod in the north to Kaliyikkavila in the south, on January 26 (Republic Day) as part of marking its resistance against the Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) and the proposed National Register of Citizens (NRC). The Kerala Assembly earlier had passed a bipartisan resolution demanding the repeal of the CAA with the state government’s petition against the controversial law still pending before the Supreme Court.
The ruling LDF, led by the CPM and including smaller constituents like the CPI, NCP, JDS, JDU and JSS, is expecting nearly 70 lakh people to join the human chain making it one of the biggest mass movements in the state’s history, said LDF convenor A Vijayaraghavan.
CPM Politburo member S Ramachandran Pillai and revenue minister C Chandrasekharan will be part of the starting bloc of the human chain in Kasaragod while chief minister Pinarayi Vijayan and CPI state secretary Kanam Rajendran will join the movement in Palayam in Thiruvananthapuram. Senior CPM leader and Politburo member MA Baby will be the final member of the chain at Kaliyikkavila on the Kerala-TN border in the south. Senior LDF leaders and ministers in the state cabinet will be part of the human chain at various places. Apart from common people and party workers, the presence of cultural leaders, artists, writers, intellectuals, actors and experts from all walks of life are expected.
ജനുവരി 26ന് എൽഡിഎഫ് നേതൃത്വത്തിൽ പൗരത്വ ഭേദഗതി നിയമം പിൻവലിക്കണമെന്നാവശ്യപ്പെട്ട് നടക്കുന്ന മനുഷ്യ മഹാശൃംഖലയിൽ അണിനിരക്കുക. pic.twitter.com/A9f2PvFLrU
— CPI(M) Kerala (@CPIMKerala) January 25, 2020
The human chain will be built on the right side of the national highways coursing through the state. A rehearsal will be held at 3:30 pm on Sunday evening by when the people would assemble at their designated spots. At 4 pm, the human chain will take shape as part of which the constituents will read the preamble to the Constitution and then take a pledge to ‘protect the Constitution and the country’s secular, democratic values. ‘ The human chain will be followed by public meetings at over 250 places across the state.
The human chain will run through 10 of the state’s 14 districts. Participants from Kottayam and Pathanamthitta districts will join the chain in Alappuzha. Also, participants from the hill districts of Idukki and Wayanad will form their own human chain and not part of the main statewide chain.
Though the LDF has reached out to the opposition Congress-led UDF to forget political differences and join the movement, the latter’s attendance is unlikely. Though the LDF and UDF had joined hands at a protest meeting earlier this month, top UDF leaders including state president Mullappally Ramachandran publicly said there’s no need for such joint protests. UDF constituents including the Congress, Kerala Congress and the Indian Union Muslim League (IUML) have been organising mass anti-CAA protests on their own.
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