New Delhi, Feb 3: Ignited from the gates of Jamia Millia Islamia in southeast Delhi, and which have spread over more than twenty sites in the capital, the sit-in protests against the Citizenship (Amendment) Act (CAA), the National Register of Citizens (NRC) and the National Population Register (NPR) are getting grimmer and more tense by the day.
The government appears to be clueless about how to end the agitation and has almost surrendered in the face of these protests.
To keep the peace at these places, however, the government has deployed, round-the-clock, a major force of paramilitary and Delhi Police personnel to prevent any untoward incidents.
With the government failing to negotiate with the protesters, some anti-social elements have been attempting to create trouble as diversionary tactics. One person was arrested last week for opening fire at protestors in Shaheen Bagh. Within days, another man was taken into custody for brandishing a pistol at the same location.
In this connection, Union Law and IT Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad has said that the Modi government was ready to talk with the Shaheen Bagh protestors, but nothing further has happened in this direction.
A senior BJP leader said in condition of anonymity that, hopefully, these talks to diffuse the protests would take place after the upcoming Delhi assembly elections get over.
The continuous sit-in protests in the city are going on at Shaheen Bagh since the last 51 days, Khureji Khas, near Khureji petrol pump (23 days), Jaffrabad in Seelampur 20 days), Turkman Gate in old Delhi (17 days), Brijpuri Puliya, Musafabad (17 days), Kardampuri Chowk, opposite Yamuna Vihar (17 days), Inderlok Metro Station (16 days), Chand Bagh, near Gokulpuri Metro Station (16 days), Sri Ram Colony, Khajuri Khas (16 days), Sundernagri, in east Delhi (15 days), Afghani Chowk, Wazirabad (13 days), Gandhi Park, Hauz Rani in Malviya Nagar (12 days), Azad Market, Beri Wala Bagh (12 days), Nizamuddin, near Lodhi Hotel (9 days), Lal Bagh, Ashok Vihar (indefinite sit-in), Shahi Idgah, Sadar Bazaar (indefinite sit-in), Noor-e-Illahi, Ghonda Chowk, near Yamuna Vihar depot (indefinite sit-in), Patparganj Mandawali, near Joshi Colony (indefinite sit-in), Jama Masjid (33 days), and Bab-ul-uloom, Seelampur (22 days).
All these places are in predominantly Muslim majority neighbourhoods that have been inspired by the sit-in at Shaheen Bagh, which has been ongoing since mid-December.
At these locations, women, with their children, gather every day with posters and placards. For the majority of these women, this is their first time that are participating in a protest.
Speaking to IANS, a few of these protesters said they intended to be on indefinite sit-in till the CAA is withdrawn.
According to the All India Muslim Majlis-e-Mushawarat President P. Navaid Hamid, there is huge anger among the protestors in Delhi about the CAA. The Act was passed in a hurry in Parliament without holding any discussions or public debate.
Hamid said that the anti-CAA protests had now caught global attention and the protests are turning into a success.
“Now the world is concerned about the youth of India. Since a few years, an environment of fear hasd developed among the minority community, and this is the reaction of the people that is being seen all over India,” he added.