Delhi protest: citizenship bill demonstrations spread in India

Videos from Delhi showed protesters clashing with police at several university campuses, and at a major police station, where demonstrators demanded the release of arrested students.

According to Indian media, protests also broke out Sunday at other universities across the country, including in Hyderabad and Varanasi, while videos showed police firing tear gas at protesters at Aligarh Muslim University in Uttar Pradesh.

Anger has been growing nationally over the Citizenship Amendment Bill (CAB), which was signed into law last week. The bill promises to fast-track citizenship for religious minorities, including Hindus, Sikhs, Buddhists, Jains, Parsis and Christians, from Afghanistan, Bangladesh and Pakistan who arrived before 2015.

But the exclusion of Muslims — which Modi says is because they are not minorities in India’s neighbors — has raised concerns about the bill’s constitutionality and the growing anti-Muslim rhetoric in India.

Many in Assam and Tripura, states in India’s northeast, also fear that it could see large numbers of Hindus migrating to the region, outnumbering the region’s 200 distinct indigenous groups and changing its religious and ethnic makeup.

There are around 16 million Hindus in Bangladesh alone, and naturalizing large numbers of immigrants could also greatly impact employment, government subsidies and education.

Police clash with demonstrators following a protest against the Indian government's Citizenship Amendment Bill (CAB) in New Delhi on December 15, 2019.

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) have described the CAB as a means of protecting vulnerable groups…

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