Straining the existing communal undercurrents in the country further, BJP MP from Aligarh Satish Gautam has asked social activist, daughter of leading Urdu poet Munawwar Rana, to “go to Pakistan” if she was feeling suffocated in India.
The Aligarh MP made the remark while talking to reporters on Sunday (February 9).
Sumaiya, while addressing a gathering of anti-CAA protesters in Aligarh on Saturday (February 8), accused the Uttar Pradesh police of using “coercive measures” to crush protests against the amended citizenship law and said such measures are “very suffocating” for the people.
“Sumaiya should go to Pakistan since she is feeling suffocated in today’s India,” Gautam said.
Gautam also said that strict action will be taken against students who have been protesting against CAA at the Aligarh Muslim University (AMU) since December 16 last year.
“There are about 150-odd students who are still holding protests at AMU, while the rest have returned to classes. They have all been identified by the police now and rest assured they will not be in the campus from the next academic year,” the BJP MP said.
Despite pressure from local authorities, Sumaiya went ahead and addressed women protesters, who have been staging a sit-in against the CAA for the past 12 days, at the Eidgah complex in Aligarh.
“We are holding all-women protests which are completely peaceful and which is our democratic right, but as we have seen in Lucknow, the UP police is using coercive measures to crush our protests,” she told protesters at the site.
In Lucknow, she said, women’s washrooms were locked to break the protest. “Such oppressive methods are very suffocating for the people,” she added.
On Sunday, Sumaiya and some AMU student leaders tried to enter the protest site but were denied permission by police. Senior Superintendent of Police, Aligarh, Akash Kulhari on Monday said it is apprehended that some antisocial elements “might try to take advantage of the ongoing protest at the Eidgah”.
Sumaiya and her sister Fauzia were at the forefront of anti-CAA protests at the clock tower of Lucknow. The Uttar Pradesh police in January had charged both of them of rioting and violating Section 144 during the protests.
(With inputs from agencies)