Anti-CAA Rally: Crowds, Kanhaiya, tell changing political equations in Bihar
PATNA—This must be an issue of concern for the ruling NDA in Bihar. Braving inclement weather and other hardships, thousands of people visited the Gandhi Maidam on Thursday to join a mega rally against the CAA-NPR-NRC (Citizenship Amendment Act, National Population Register and National Register for Citizens).
An impressive crowd turned up to attend “Samvidhan Bachao, Nagrikta Bachao Rally” at the Gandhi Maidan, literally unmoved and unperturbed by the repeated opposition to state-wide, month-long yatra against the CAA-NPR-NRC undertaken by the former JNU Students’ Union president Kanhaiya Kuamr and frequent attacks on his carcade. On many occasions, Kanhaiya had a narrow escape.
On Thursday, Kanhaiya remained the most sought-after leader although a galaxy of leaders, such as Medha Patkar, Narmada Bachao Andolan leader, Kannan Gopinathan, former IAS-turned-activist, Tushar Gandhi, great grandson of Mahatma Gandhi and JNUSU president Aishe Ghosh, were present on the dais to address the crowd.
“We are least bothered about government’s repressive measures. Our agitation will continue until the CAA is withdrawn,” Kanhiaya declared, likening the agitation to the “second freedom struggle”.
He said his agitation is not become a leader but to save the nation, democracy. “Now, it’s the people to decide whether they want to go with Mahatma Gandhi or with his killer Nathuram Godse,” he said.
This was the first rally of Kanhaiya in the state capital right since he joined the CPI last year. Pior to this, most of his rallies were held either in the college campuses or in Begusarai.
In the last LS polls, the CPI fielded him against BJP’s Giriraj Singh but lack of unity among the secular parties cost him dear. The RJD also jumped into the poll fray from Begusarai, which saw sharp split in the secular votes leading to defeat of Kanhaiya.
Today rally, however, tells a different story. Given various communities and sections of the society attending the rally in huge numbers, it becomes clear that the CAA is not being opposed by a particular community—the Muslims. And, this obviously should be a matter of worry for the ruling NDA in Bihar where assembly elections are barely eight months away.