The resistance in India is making headlines. It involves a f*cked up law. And women doing the damn things. So, here’s what’s going on with India’s protests against the anti-Muslim citizenship law.
The Anti-Muslim law
India passed the Citizenship Amendment Act last month. Here’s what it means:
The law will give Indian citizenship to non-Muslim refugees from Pakistan, Bangladesh and Afghanistan. However, Marie Claire reports, it puts Muslims at risk of getting pushed out of the country or into detention centres.
So protesters are taking to the streets to fight against this discriminatory law. Time reports that the law will require Indians to provide proof of residence and Indian ancestry. Muslims comprise 13.4% of India’s population.
Muslim women are leading the movement
The police started cracking down on protesters. After the law passed, they were particularly brutal at universities. Muslim women across ages joined the protest.
One month later, they are not giving up. Thousands of protesters are still occupying the highway. Women are still on the frontlines. Around 10,000 to 20,000 protesters come together every day. On Sunday, more than 150,000 came through.
Time reports that the site was ringing with chants, poetry and the Indian national anthem. Women are leading the resistance against the new law that discriminates against Muslims. And it’s snowballing. Similar protests are sparking up across India.
What are the protestors are saying?
‘We have forgotten our homes, we have set aside our family obligations and responsibilities,’ says Nusra Ara, a 43-year-old homemaker, ‘We are fighting for our rights, our children’s rights. Our existence, their future.’
‘The specialty of a women-led movement is that they can be sustained longer. Women don’t give up,’ says veteran activist and lead campaigner of the Save Narmada Movement, Medha Patkar.
‘The law violates the constitution’, says university student Humaira Sayed, ‘It may target Muslims at the moment but we’re convinced it will gradually target other communities too. As a Muslim, I know I have to be here for my brothers, sisters, the community and for everyone else.’
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