Mumbai/Delhi, Feb 25
For the first time after agitations began across the country, against the Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA), a 20 kms long morcha (padyatra) was organised in Buldhana district of Vidarbha region of Maharashtra, on Monday afternoon.
The morcha which began from Motala, wound its way through Waghjal, Rajur Ghat and culminated into a huge rally at “Shahinbaug” of Buldhana. The leaders from different parties addressed the meeting and demanded that the CAA be abrogated. Later they submitted a memorandum to the District Collector Suman Chandra.
The morcha almost looked like a long walkthon with hundreds of people, including women with babes in arms, joining the morcha, in a scorching hit. In view of the long march, several organisations and local people had made arrangement of water for the participants.
In another development, Samajwadi Party MLA Abu Asim Azmi from Mumbai, on Monday said that, instead of expressing contradictory opinions, Maharashtra Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray should declare that the Maharashtra will not only implement the CAA. Thackeray during his recent visit to Delhi, in a media interaction, had said that no one need to fear about the CAA since it does not ask any citizen to leave the country. The act stipulates granting of citizenship to certain minorities facing persecution, outside India. In response, Congress leader Manish Tiwari had said that one need explain provisions of CAA to Thackeray.
In the meanwhile the situation in Gokulpuri, Jaffrabad areas in Delhi where three persons, including Head Constable Ratan Lal and agitators Furkan and Shahin died and 37 others, including DCP Amit Sharma, were injured, during anti-CAA agitation, continued to remain volatile.
Even as stone pelting and firing by some of the agitators continued, two metro stations- Maujpur, and Babarpur in East Delhi were closed by the Delhi Metro Rail Corporation (DMRC). Similarly the entry and exist from Jaffrabad was closed by the police. The paramilitary forces were deployed with local police to quell the mob. On Sunday, the agitators also torched two houses in Maujpur area.
Delhi CM Arvind Kejriwal urged the Union Home Minister Amit Shah and Delhi Lt Governor to ensure peace. In a tweet he said “ Very distressing news regarding disturbance of peace and harmony in parts of Delhi..I sincerely urge Hon’ble LG and Hon’ble Union Home Minister to restore law and order & ensure that peace and harmony is maintained. Nobody should be allowed to orchestrate flagrations.
On Monday Shah held a special meeting with top officials of Delhi police and directed them to bring the situation under control. Most of the school and colleges remain closed and some of the exams were cancelled in view of the disturbances.
Tension prevailed at Jaffrabad in northeast Delhi after clashes broke out between two groups during a protest against the CAA on Sunday afternoon. The protesters for and against the CAA, pelted stones at each other, prompting police to fire tear gas shells.
Jaffrabad has been witnessing protests since Saturday evening when a group of women began a sit-in near the metro station. On Sunday, more than 500 protesters, mainly women, blocked a major road in the area, forcing the authorities to close the metro station. The protesters vowed not to end the agitation till the Centre revokes the contentious legislation.
Raju Vernekar is a Media Professional based in Mumbai and is a regular contributor of Imphal Times. He had served as Chief Reporter at Free Press Journal (1996 – 2015 ). His Activities includes writing for different news papers, script writing/production for TV channels, Films Division. Writing poems in Marathi, Hindi, English, Guiding mass media students and helping people to solve their problems. Raju may be contacted at [email protected]
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