Indian Citizens in Iran Hold Protest Against CAA-NRC-NPR

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Indian Americans protest against CAA in Washington. — File photo

Indian embassy in Iran did not allow protesters enter its premises to submit a representation to the Modi government

Akif Zaidi | Caravan Daily

TEHRAN — Led by those studying in Qom, a city in Iran known for religious seminaries, hundreds of Indian students, professionals and businessmen living in Iran gathered outside the Indian Embassy here on Thursday in protest against the wrong policies of the Narendra Modi-led BJP government and specially against the enforcement of the controversial Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) and the planned NPR-NRC.

The protest began at 11am with the singing of the National Anthem of India. This was followed by a short speech by Maulana Shameem Raza in which he expressed (in good faith) his gratitude to the Ambassador for passing on the protesters’ message of disapproval to the authorities in New Delhi. He exhorted those present at the rally to do their utmost to save India from being driven to ruin.

This was followed by a recitation of the preamble to the Indian Constitution, led by Maulana Muhammad Hussain Suratwala. Those present there affirmed their commitment to the values upheld by their country’s Constitution.

Towards the end of the protest, a memorandum was read out by Maulana Najeebul Hasan Zaidi and approved by the protesters. In it, demands were made for complete cancelation of the NPR-NRC initiative, a rollback of the CAA, promise of ensuring a dignified life for Kashmiris, and the safety of those protesting peacefully across India against the new citizenship law, and strict legal action against policemen and others responsible for attacking protesters.

An art competition for the children present at the protest was another highlight of the event. It was held on the sidelines of the protest. In it, children expressed themselves against NRC-CAA and other Indian issues in a creative mode. The entire programme was punctuated by several slogans from the protesters.

The presence of a large number of uniformed Iranian police personnel ensured a climate of safety and discipline vis-a-vis the protest.

In the end, the protesters attempted through a representative to submit a copy of the memorandum to the Embassy with a request to pass it on to the central government in New Delhi as also to other statutory authorities in India. However, the representative’s repeated requests to enter the embassy were rejected.

This has become a unique instance of Indian citizens being prevented from entering the embassy of their own country during office hours, in any part of the world.

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