Citizenship law breaking friendships, relationships

Citizenship law breaking friendships, relationships

Young supporters of the CAA hold up signs that they made during a rally to show support for the CAA, at Town Hall. (DH Photo)

The Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) may be the source of sleepless nights for a great many people in Indian society, but it is also wreaking havoc on relationships on social media. 

For three recent college graduates with professed right-wing leanings, their political beliefs and support for the CAA have cost them a slew of friendships. 

Aparajit, Spriha and Vidya are all the same age, 22, and this is no coincidence. All three individuals were classmates at the Air Force School, Hebbal, and were attending a pro-CAA rally at Town Hall on Sunday. They were found writing creative slogans on placards for other attendees. 

"We stand in contrast to the popular belief that not all right-wingers are middle-aged or geriatric Bhakts," said Aparajit, clarifying that many young in his generation also subscribe to conservative views. "However, disclosing such views comes with its challenges." 

All three individuals revealed that they had lost friends on social media after they made posts coming out in support of the CAA. "There is nothing wrong in having one's own opinions, but expressing your opinions online is increasingly coming with consequences in the digital world," said Spriha and Vidya. 

No one knows this better than Aparajit, who clarified that his disclosure to attend the pro-CAA protest had cost him nearly 40 out of 280 followers on Instagram. "These are people I counted as my close friends and used to have debates with in the past," he said. 

All three friends said they believed that the CAA would not be linked to the National Register of Citizens (NRC) and that even if it was, that Indian Muslims would most likely not be affected. "However, if it does start to affect them, then we will also take to the streets," Aparajit said.