On December 12, 2019, the Bharatiya Janta Party passed a new citizenship law, i.e. the Citizenship (Amendment) Act 2019 in the Lok Sabha. According to this law, all immigrants of Hindu, Sikh, Jain, Parsi, Christian and Buddhist identity will be granted citizenship on the basis of facing religious persecution in three countries, i.e. Pakistan, Bangladesh and Afghanistan.
This law has no provision for Muslims even though Muslims around the world have faced religious persecution, and continue to face it in our neighbouring countries – such as the Ahmadiyyas in Pakistan, the Rohingya Muslims in Myanmar and the Uyghurs in China.
Another provision of this act is those who had entered India between 1951 and 1971 would be granted citizenship and those who had done so after 1971 would be sent to detention centres. The cutoff date for finalising the NRC (National Register of Citizens) for Assam has been set at March 24, 1971.
This particular law led to nationwide protests as it is not only divisive but also violates Article 14 of the Indian Constitution which states prohibition of discrimination on the grounds of religion, race, caste, sex, place of birth. The CAA leaves out Muslims. I believe that this law is communal as well.
Along with protests, this law has also led to nationwide violence, with almost hundreds of people dying in states such as Uttar Pradesh. Violence was also inflicted on students of Jawaharlal Nehru University, Jamia Millia Islamia and Aligarh Muslim University. The Delhi Police brutally attacked the students of Jamia Millia Islamia where they ransacked the library in December 2019.
This law also gave rise to a revolutionary movement in Delhi’s Shaheen Bagh, which was led by women of that area. But, after a month and a half, the movement was politicised by the leaders of Bharatiya Janta Party to gain votes for the upcoming Delhi Assembly Elections. They went on to say that people living in that area, especially men, would go into the house of Hindu families and would rape their daughters and wives thus, instigating communal hatred between the two communities.
Kapil Mishra, the party’s leader, who contested from Model Town and lost the seat to an AAP leader even referred to the people of Shaheen Bagh as ‘Pakistanis’ and had tweeted that on February 8, that whatever ensued would be a match between India and Pakistan.
Now if we talk about the current scenario, just two days ago, the President of the United States of America, Donald Trump had come to India for a two-day visit. All the jazz of welcoming him was conducted quite successfully but on the other hand, the whole state of Delhi state woke up to burning violence.
Northeast Delhi broke out in mob violence. Delhi’s Chand Bagh, Khajuri Khas, Bhajanpura and Seelampur have been affected. People of both the communities started killing each other. As many as 34 people have died as of now. And around 250 people have been injured.
The reason for all this violence is quite simple. Kapil Mishra once again tried to mislead people of both communities by instigating violence through conducting a rally in one of the affected areas and warning the anti-CAA protestors to end their protest otherwise, there would be dire consequences.
Many leaders of opposition parties have been demanding the resignation of the Union Home Minister Amit Shah. The Delhi Police, which comes under his direct control have again failed to take control of the situation as it has only gotten worse. They have again become mute spectators. The situation went out of hand and the Delhi government had to call the army and seek their help.
Section 144 have been imposed in these areas and the CBSE board examinations which were supposed to be held in these areas have been postponed. How can they meddle with the board examinations!
I believe the reason why Kapil Mishra or Waris Pathan, the leader of AIMIM whose comment also instigated violence is because they were political stunts, or as they say, a ‘state organised protest.’ But what these political leaders don’t realise is that in their greed for political gains it’s the innocent people who suffer and it is these individuals only from whom they plead for votes during the time of elections!
In the protest, a Muslim man opened fire and some Hindus pelted stones, burnt shops and houses belonging to Muslims. The National Security Advisor, Ajit Doval had yesterday gone to inspect the situation and ensured the people of these areas that they will be provided safety and the situation would soon become normal.
But what about those families who have lost their loved ones? Who is going to provide justice to them? I think it’s high time that leaders like Kapil Mishra be suspended for instigating communal hatred through their hate speeches just to gain political seats.