New Delhi: On the last day of the year, anti-CAA protesters, including students and activists, staged demonstrations at several places in Delhi, including Connaught Place, Shaheen Bagh and Saket, and expressed hope that the Citizenship Amendment Act would be repealed in the New Year.
Around two to three thousand people, including women and college students, gathered at Shaheen Bagh, the tarpaulin-shaded venue for the protest for the two weeks.
The people at the "peaceful protest" against the contentious Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) and the National Register of Citizens (NRC) held posters, placards and the tricolour in their hands.
"I have come in the hope that something good happens in the New Year. I have come here because I was told that after Jamia and AMU, if you have to rekindle hope go to Shaheen Bagh," Yogendra Yadav of Swaraj India said. Quoting legendary film lyricist Sahir Ludhianvi's line "jinhe naaz hai Hind par wo kahan hain", Yadav, who was a prominent face of the India Against Corruption movement too, told the crowd, "Jinhe naaz hai Hind par wo yahan hain (Those proud of India are here)." He also told the protesters that similar demonstrations would be carried out in other parts of the country to oppose the law.
"Wo todenge, hum jodenge (Those in power will break the country, but we, the people, will unite it)," he said, adding the people can win this "fight" banking on the Constitution given by B R Ambedkar and the principles of Mahatma Gandhi.
Sara, 16, and her brother Aman, 12, held placards in their hands, both handwritten poetries.
"I am not into the Hindu-Muslim divide, my only concern is that the law discriminates on grounds of religion and that should never happen in India," Sara, a Class 11 student, told PTI. Outside PVR Anupam theatre in south Delhi, nearly 50 protesters, including activist Shabnam Hashmi and lawyer Vrinda Grover, raised slogans against the CAA. Grover said, "We selected this spot (PVR Anupam) because we want to take our protests to each part of the city. Today, several taxi drivers joined us and supported us." Social activist Hashmi said, "The idea was to protest silently and artistically. We encouraged people to sing songs and read important points on NRC and CAA. We explained the impact to all and also distributed pamphlets." At the Central Park in Connaught Place, Delhi Congress workers led by DPCC chief Subhash Chopra tried to sit on a symbolic hunger strike against the amended citizenship act, economic slowdown and other issues.
However, they were detained and taken to the Mandir Marg police station.