Fearmongering over the amended Citizenship Act (CAA), NCP MLA and Maharashtra minister of Housing Jitendra Awhad, on Sunday, raised doubts as to how Hindus would prove their ancestry. Pointing out that Muslims would be able to point out where their ancestors were buried, it would be difficult for a Hindu to recall where their ancestors' last rites were performed. The minister was addressing a rally in Maharashtra's Bhiwandi area.
"I don't think this act is just against Muslims. Can any of the Hindus tell me where the last rites of your ancestors were done? But a Muslim can point out where his ancestor was buried," he said.
This shocking remark by the Maharashtra minister comes amid nationwide protests against the CAA. While currently, the protests have died down in Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, Maharashtra, protests have continued in Delhi -specifically in Shaheen Bagh - which was initially organised by JNU, being mainly led by Muslim women, later got politicised. The Supreme Court is yet to hear the over 60 petitions challenging the Act.
The protests began on December 14 where thousands of people, including women and children started protesting at Shaheen Bagh and nearby Jamia Millia Islamia to oppose the CAA and the NRC. While the Delhi High Court has refused to stay the protests inspite of claims that protestors have put barricades and heavy stones on the sides of the roads, the protests have continued with people still gathering and causing road blockages and traffic congestions. Inspite the Shaheen Bagh Coordination committee called off their part of the protests on January 2, citing politicizing of the protests, the protests against NRC and CAA continue.
Marking a first, the Kerala government earlier this week moved the Supreme Court against the CAA, seeking to declare it “violative of the principles of equality, freedom, and secularism enshrined in the Constitution”. On its heels, the Punjab government too passed a resolution demanding to scrap the contentious law. Next, Rajasthan has declared it will pass a resolution against the law on January 24, the first day of its next session. Several states like Maharashtra, Madhya Pradesh, West Bengal, Telangana, and other non-BJP states are mullling the same, while openly opposing CAA-NRC-NPR.