Thousands of women have been protesting the Citizenship Amendment Act every day in Punjab. This has been going on for days now. Women from every community have been coming together to take part in these demonstrations in several cities. In Ludhiyana, women of all communities have written an affidavit in blood against the new Citizenship Amendment Act. Such a thing is being witnessed in Punjab for the first time.
It’s important to note here that women have been protesting the CAA in many parts of the country. In Punjab too, women have been registering their protest coming out of their homes. When such a large number of women come out on the streets to protest, it seems as if their sarees have become the flag of the protest. According to various women’s organisations, this will continue in coming days too. On Sunday too a large number of women took to streets in Ludhiana to protest and took out a long march. Many well-known personalities too joined the demonstration. The student leader of Punjab University Chandigarh Kanupriya, Navdeep Kaur and Nasreen Sultana and Rahnuma Khatoon from Fateh Channel led this agitation and handed over the affidavit written in blood to the Shahi Imam of the historic Jama Masjid of Ludhiana.
People of all sections, community and religion took part in this demonstration. Women in Ludhiana were carrying placards on which messages of unity like ‘Hindu Muslim Sikh Isayi/ aapas me hain bhai bhai! (Hindu, Muslim, Sikh and Christians/ all are brothers) United India/ one India’, ‘Our India’ were written.
On this occasion, Kanupriya, a famous student leader of Punjab University Chandigarh, opposed the CAA and NRC and said that the regressive and divisive forces want to break the unity and integrity of India. But mothers, daughters and sisters of this country will never let the nefarious plans of the Modi government succeed. Those who promised to provide bread, clothing and housing are asking for the proof of citizenship from their own people of this country today. Kanupriya said, “We will go and protest in Delhi too. In every city of Punjab, women in thousands are coming out and opposing this law and on an average, this number comes to millions.”
Navdeep Kaur of Fateh Channel says, “The supporters of the CAA and NRC should come to their senses and see that the women of many communities and sections are against this fascist law. If they are not able to see it anywhere, then they should come to Punjab and see this fact.” When Rahnuma Khatoon recited Faiz Ahmad Faiz’s popular nazm ‘Hum Dekhenge’ on this occasion, hundreds of women and girls recited along with her and chanted other slogans. Speaking in Punjabi, Nasreen Sultana vehemently opposed the Citizenship Amendment Act and said that the solidarity of women in Punjab against this law poses a big challenge and is a danger bell for the Modi government.
Passing through many streets of the city of Ludhiana this demonstration by women reached Jama Masjid where women handed over the affidavit written in blood to the Shahi Imam, Punjab, Maulana Habib Ur Rehman. Later, Shahi Imam said, “ Modi government is running away from the questions posed by the daughters of this country. It is sad that despite being in power, they have to organise rallies in support of the law they have made. These protests by the women of many communities and religions is extraordinary.”
In this affidavit in blood, women have written that they will continue to protest unitedly till the last drop of their blood against this Act which has been created as a part of the conspiracy to break the Constitution. ‘We were all together in India's freedom struggle and no power can break our brotherhood, which is a symbol of unity in diversity.’ The affidavit further states that the refugees are ‘our brothers and sisters but not on the basis of religion but on the basis of humanity and their being Indian. In the cover of refugees, the government is trying to murder democracy in the country which will never be allowed.’ The special characteristic of this affidavit is that it has been written with the blood of Hindu, Sikh, Muslim and Christian women.
A day before Ludhiana protest, thousands of women in Malerkotla took out a protest march against the CAA and NRC. There too, women of various communities had taken part in this march and the city had come to a standstill. Hardeep Kaur Kotla, the deputy head of Punjab Students Union, who led the women's rally in Malerkotla, said, "The Citizenship Amendment Bill and other similar laws are not only against Muslims but also against all the minorities, workers and Dalits of the country.”
Swati Khanna, a student of law in Delhi University who came to specially take part in this protest, said “CAA, NRC and NPR are against all Indians. Every just person should stand up against them.”
According to social activist Zulekha Zaheen, “The current regime is cruelly playing with the unity and integrity of the country. By presenting false facts before international community, they are also being misled on this.”
Eminent human rights acitivist Dr. Navsharan said, "For the first time such solidarity among women is being witnessed in Punjab against the black laws of the Central government. This is a new wave of awakening among women which will certainly go a long way and will definitely yield some very positive results in coming days.”