Jamia women students lead protests outside varsity

Jamia women students lead protests outside varsity

Protestors hold placards during a demonstration against the Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) outside Jamia Milia Islamia University. (PTI Photo)

The Jamia Millia Islamia students on Saturday staged a demonstration yet again outside the varsity campus against amendments in the citizenship law, days after violent clashes between police and agitations in its vicinity.

The demonstration was led by woman students of the central varsity and was later joined by its male students as well as alumni and "outsiders".

The slogans like "Ladke lenge azadi" (will get independence after fighting) and "Inquilab Zindabad" that echoed in a group of around 50 students initially turned into mass protests in few hours leading to more than 500 persons joining the protests.

As the protesting crowd swelled by minutes, the women students specifically asked them not to use abusive or unparliamentary language during the protest.

The protestors vent out their anger shouting slogans like "Modi-Shah go back to school" holding placards which read: "Donate a book to needy students; Book's name Indian Constitution, by Amit Shah" and "Jab jab Modi darta hai, police ko aage karta hai".

The varsity has been at the forefront of the protest against the citizenship law.

Participating in the protest, 76-year-old JMI alumus Nafiz Ikram said, "You all are leading a movement against what is wrong. Don't step back. Don't get scared of police. You are the real police who are fighting to protect our Constitution".

A protester who came from Bihar to join the protest said, "The rich have proof of their identity or they will procure it somehow. How will the labourers and workers, who migrate from UP and Bihar, manage to get the proofs?"

The students also took out a march against the Citizenship (Amendment) Act, 2019. Some former students of the university came to the spot with their children holding posters for demonstration.

Salim Ahmed from Okhla said, "I am with students of this country. What happened at Jamia Millia last week was unpardonable. My son is here carrying a poster and I want my son to grow up in a secular nation and not a biased country”, who had brought his five-year-old son to the protest venue.

The women gathered in larger numbers as the protests gathered momentum. The women flocked from Okhla, Shaheen Baug, Jasola and neighbouring areas to support the students.

Holding a poster in her hand, a 73-year-old woman from Okhla said, "I can’t imagine what the mothers of those kids went through who got injured."

"I am a mother and my son studied in Delhi. I know whenever students have held protests on a subject, they have put up a strong fight against wrong practices in India”.

Her poster read “My kids are not alone”.

A small group of students sang parodies on the present situation of the Indian government. The students from Aligarh Muslim University had also joined the protests.

Imran Khan from AMU said, “We are leading the protests in AMU and also helping our fellow student in Jamia and other universities to raise their voice against this draconian law."

"Our friends have been detained by Delhi Police but we will not get demoralised by it and continue with our protests,” he added.

Waseem Khan, LLM student from Jamia who was spearheading the protests said, “The CAA is biased on the basis of religion and each of us are fighting for something erroneous we have observed in the CAA. No students ever protest violently. We have been protesting shouting slogans since a week and never initiated violence”.

Several groups of people lent their support to protesters and distributed food, water and tea to the agitationists sitting outside Gate no 7 of Jamia for long.

Various groups, including some women supporters, had brought biryani, samosas and other food items and distributed tea, biscuits and toast to protestors urging them to eat and protest with full vigour.

The Delhi police had entered the varsity campus on December 15 to look for 'outsiders’, who were involved in violence and arson during a protest against the CAA, a few metres away from the campus.

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