The Hyderabad police on Thursday rejected permission for a poetry and protest meeting against the CAA, NPR and NRC at the historic Charminar on the night of January 25 after BJP lodged its protest with the Police Commissioner.
The poetry and protest along with hoisting of the national flag at Charminar, the symbol of Hyderabad, was planned by the United Muslim Action Committee, of which All India Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen (AIMIM) is a part.
However, hours after a delegation of Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leaders called on Hyderabad Police Commissioner Anjani Kumar, the organizers announced that the venue has been shifted to the Khilwat Ground.
AIMIM President and Hyderabad MP Asaduddin Owaisi tweeted that the police rejected permission for the protest meeting and instead advised them to move it to nearby Khilwat Grounds.
He announced that the ‘Mushaira’ and protest meeting against Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA), National Population Register (NPR) and National Register of Citizens (NRC) will now be held at Khilwat Grounds. The national flag would be hoisted at midnight to usher in the Republic Day.
BJP’s Telangana unit chief K. Laxman had threatened that if AIMIM was permitted to hold the protest rally at Charminar, his party would hold a meeting at another place.
Laxman alleged that the police were denying permission to BJP for rallies and meetings but were allowing AIMIM to organise its programmes. He said AIMIM, through its programme at the Charminar, would spread communal disharmony.
It was earlier this month that Owaisi had announced the protest programme at Charminar. His party on Thursday stated that the programme will see participation by country’s leading Urdu poets.
“There is a long-standing tradition in Hyderabad to use poetry and satire to challenge tyranny and oppression, this ‘Festival of Democracy’ is part of this tradition. The goal of the event is to not only celebrate the Republic of India and its Constitution, but to also emphasise on the dangers to it from CAA, NPR and NRC,” the AIMIM said.
The event will see participation by well-known poets Rahat Indori, Sampat Saral and Lata Haya along with young voices such as Nabiya Khan, Aamir Aziz and Husain Haidry.
The line “kisi ke baap ka Hindustan thodi hai” from Indori’s poem has been a constant in anti-CAA protests being staged across the country. Aziz’s “Acche Din Blues” and “Main inkaar karta hoon” have also seen widespread popularity on the Internet.
Members of civil society and religious scholars of all faiths have been invited for the event, which is likely to see huge public turnout.