Hyderabad: India’s leading poets vent the public anger against Citizenship Amendment Act and National Register of Citizens at a unique protest on the eve of the Republic Day here on Saturday.
Thousands of people thronged Khilwat Grounds near historic Charminar as poetry, qawali and satire targetted the government, condemned the police excesses and communalism.
Leading poets Rahat Indori, Manzar Bhopali, Shabeena Adeeb and Sampat Saral recited their poems amid thunderous cheers by huge crowd.
On the demand from people, Rahat Indori recited his famous poem “kisi ke baap ka Hindustan thodi hai”.
Condemning attempts by some individuals to paint this as a poem by a Muslim poet, he said that this is the voice of all true Indians who shed their blood for building this nation. He said he was pained over being called ”Jihadi”.
Shabeena Adeeb, in her unique style, recited her poem ”Yeh Hindustan hamara hai”, drawing loud cheers from audience with many of them waving national flag.
Manzar Bhopali too earned appreciation for his powerful couplets, decrying attempts by some forces to divide the nation.
United Muslim Action Committee, of which All India Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen (AIMIM) is a part, organised the programme.
AIMIM chief and Hyderabad MP Asaduddin Owaisi presided over the programme. However, he and other leaders allowed poetry to take the centre stage.
Sampat Saral poked fun at Prime Minister Narendra Modi with his poetry and satire titled ”Mann ki baat, kaam ki baat”.
Jamia Millia Islamia”s Aamir Aziz drew huge applause for his poems, highlighting the state repression to suppress peaceful and democratic protests.
The programme had to be concluded early due to conditions imposed by the High Court. While hearing a petition filed by a BJP leader earlier in the day, the court directed the organisers not to hold the meeting till midnight.
Owaisi also had to drop plans of hoisting the national flag.
“The court is supreme but not infallible,” was how the MP reacted.
The programme was originally scheduled to be held at Charminar but the police asked them to shift it to Khilwat Grounds.