R-Day: Anti-CAA human chain to be made in Kolkata

11-km-long anti-CAA human chain to be formed in city on Republic Day in Kolkata

He said the decision to form the human chain was prompted by recent developments in the country that "attempted to divide the society"

Left supporters take part in a human chain during a protest against the Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) and National Register of Citizens (NRC), in Patna, Saturday, Jan. 25, 2020. (PTI Photo)

Hundreds of people from different communities are likely to form an 11-km-long human chain from the north to the south of the city on Republic Day "to uphold unity and protect the Constitution", organisers said on Saturday.

The human chain from Shyambazaar in the north to Golpark in the southern part of the city will be formed at noon for 10 minutes, said organisers United Interfaith Foundation India (UIFI), an inter-faith group comprising leaders of different religious communities in the state.

"We have decided to form a human chain on Republic Day as we want to drive home the message that we -- Hindus, Muslims, Sikhs, Christians, Buddhists, Jains -- are one. Everyone stands united as an Indian citizen and we will never allow anyone to sow the seeds of discord among us," UIFI general secretary Satnam Ahluwalia told PTI.

He said leaders of different communities have asked members of their communities to actively participate in the 11-km-long human chain which will cover areas like Park Circus seven-point crossing, Mullick Bazar, Ripon Street-AJC Bose Road crossing, Nonapukur, Raja Bazar and Maniktala.

Ahluwalia said while the UIFI has not asked the participants to carry any placard, "if any of them bring anything to voice their protest about any issue, they are free to do that, as we oppose any bid to muffle freedom of expression and right to live as guaranteed under the Constitution."

Nirufa Khatun, one of the participants of the indefinite sit-in demonstration at Park Circus Maidan against CAA and NRC, said, "While we will continue our protests at the venue, some of us will also go to the nearest point of the human chain as we strongly feel about the issues."

"Once the women have come out to make their voices heard, there is no way they will head back home till the goal is realised," said Muzaffar Ali, one of the persons actively supporting the stir at Park Circus.

Meanwhile, some anti-CAA demonstrators who are on a sit-in before the Kolkata Municipal Corporation building had a scuffle with police when the cops asked them to leave the spot.

"One cannot stage protest in this fashion just by sitting anywhere. By organising such kind of protests, they are diluting the intensity of anti-CAA movement and strengthening hands of BJP," Mayor Firhad Hakim said.

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