New Delhi: Days after the courts modified his bail order and allowed him to return, Bhim Army chief Chandrashekhar Azad on Wednesday visited Delhi’s Shaheen Bagh and warned the government that the Centre would have to go over our corpses if it wanted the law implemented”
Bhim Army chief Chandrashekhar Azad was detained by the police from the Jama Masjid area on 18th January.
Ambedkar lauded women of Shaheen Bagh
Azad also praised the women of Shaheen Bagh, who have braved a bitterly cold winter to participate in a weeks-long sit-in protest and said he would travel across India to urge more women to “fight for the unity of India and “make every bagh (garden) a Shaheen Bagh”
“Ambedkar said women will lead. Today, when the Constitution is in danger, women are leading the country and fighting for it,” said Chandrashekhar Azad who had earlier been barred from entering for four weeks.
“If the government wants to implement this law (the citizenship law), they will have to go over our corpses,” said Azad, who was arrested last month after leading a massive protest against the citizenship law at Delhi’s iconic Jama Masjid and charged with arson, rioting and inciting violence.
Protests impacting day to day life
Azad also hit out at claims the Shaheen Bagh protest had severely impacted daily life in the capital, particularly those who commute to and from Noida; the protest has blocked a key road connecting these two regions and caused congestion on alternative routes, such as the Delhi-Noida-Delhi Flyway.
“Where in Delhi do you not find traffic jams? I accept that there is some difficulty… but tell me honestly, were you not troubled by demonetisation too?” Mr Azad asked critics of the Shaheen Bagh protests.
“In the next 10 days there will be 5,000 Shaheen Bagh-like protests in the country,” he declared.
The Shaheen Bagh protest inspired a similar one in Uttar Pradesh’s Lucknow, where around 50 women began a sit-in demonstration only to be forcibly dispersed by the cops.
The Citizenship (Amendment) Act, 2019 was passed by the Parliament of India on 11 December 2019. It amended the Citizenship Act of 1955 by providing a path to Indian citizenship for members of Hindu, Sikh, Buddhist, Jain, Parsi, and Christian religious minorities, who had fled persecution from Pakistan, Bangladesh and Afghanistan before December 2014. Muslims, however are excluded from this privilege.