Photo and text: Shaheen Abdulla
The freezing cold of Delhi is nowhere near the spirits of hundreds camping in Shaheen Bagh, near the banks of river Yamuna in south Delhi. Women and children take centre stage and stay overnight. They pledge they will not leave until the Controversial Citizenship Act is not scrapped.
People came out on Saturday, December 14, in response to the call given by local leaders along with MLA Amanathulla Khan. They have been blocking the highway which connects south Delhi with Noida for the week in protest against CAA. Although Amanathulla Khan was charged with FIR and not able to be present, people took control.
Rejecting the government, people around the country have invaded the streets and roads protesting against CAA and NRC. even though the government is adamant to curb the protest, no efforts seem working. Internet connectivity has been disrupted many times in Shaheen Bagh.
Women and students are moderating and sloganeering in the freezing cold of winter as men and youth organise and facilitate food and bed. Anyone in the crowd can speak or perform. students come up with poems and the crowd welcomes anyone who speaks without instigating violence. Boys come up with poems and ideas which are shared and appreciated by the elderly.
Kurshid, an MBBS aspirant is guarding the place as they have used three blockades to make territories to keep people safe police. “There might be anti-social elements in the crowd and if we don’t maintain the space, things can get ugly,” says the twenty-year-old.
Although there is no room for violence, people are worried about police action and unpredictable crackdown. more than twenty people have been killed by police in the past two days as reports of police brutality are flooding from UP and parts of Delhi
He claims that no violence has been reported from the crowd as people themselves keep the decorum. youth from the area takes shifts in guarding the barricades.