Image courtesy News 18
People, Persons, Citizens
When the idea of citizenship is wielded like a deadly weapon to deprive people of basic rights rather than to empower them, it’s time to think about the basis of rights differently. While in the Preamble to the Constitution, ‘we the people’ resolve to secure to all its ‘citizens’ justice, liberty, equality and fraternity; Article 14 of the Fundamental Rights ensures equality before the law to all “persons”, not only to citizens.
The people of a land precede the creation of “citizens”, and we the people of India must think seriously at this moment in our history, about how justice is to be secured to all persons, and whether citizenship is an emancipatory idea any longer.
Consider the revealing and tragic irony of one of the accused arrested for his alleged role in violence during protests against the Citizenship Amendment Act 2019 (CAA) , in East Delhi’s Seemapuri. Through his counsel, in a Delhi court, he claimed to be a juvenile, and to prove this, produced certificates from the madarsa at which he studies.
Delhi Police, however, claimed that these documents were insufficient to establish his age, and requested permission for a bone ossification test. The counsel of the accused argued that according to central government notifications, madarsa certificates are sufficient to prove age, but the Delhi court permitted police to carry out the ossification test.
Imagine the claim of such a person to citizenship and to inclusion in the National Register of Citizens (NRC)! Continue reading It’s We the People, not we the Citizens, of India!
As Jamia Teachers Association calls for a candelight vigil at India Gate TODAY at 5 pm (December 23, 2019), we are publishing an earlier Facebook post by FAIZ ULLAH on Jamia written soon after the police violence at the university during the anti-CAA protests there.
Dayaar-e-shauq mera is the anthem of Jamia Milia Islamia. Translation of the lyrics at this link.
FAIZ ULLAH writes:
Jamia Millia Islamia for me, and many like me who grew up in the small neighbourhoods around it, is not just a institution of higher education. It is our nursery, our playground, and where we came of age. My family moved from Bara Hindu Rao to Jamia Nagar area in the mid 1980s because my father thought living in the vicinity of an educational institution would be good for us. I am not very sure if the anti-Sikh violence of 1984 Delhi was a decisive reason for him to move us to a place he thought would be safe, but looking back I think he did kind of foresaw the shape of things.
Over the next couple of decades my elder brother studied History, My sister Social Work, and I, Mass Communication at Jamia. My niece will graduate this year from the same university in which her grandfather also enrolled for a while for his fourth degree – he had to drop out in the first year because he was already running a small primary school with my mother and practicing law on the side.
My brother was active in the students’ politics circles and served as the joint secretary of the university’s students’ union. This often translated into arguments between him and my father, not over his politics but that he would be too involved in it and would disappear for days without any information.
Continue reading Dayaar-E-Shauq Mera – Land of my Hopes: Faiz Ullah
Guest Post by Jamia Millia Islamia Students
What exactly happened in Jamia Millia Islamia on 13th August?
The sequence of events:
Just two days before Independence Day, all the hostel residents were informed personally by the administrative authorities to be careful as there may be some raid by IB or CBI or Delhi Police. Students were instructed not to keep any non-resident student in the hostel.
While it is okay to instruct students not to keep any non-resident student in the hostel, what is problematic is the atmosphere of fear that was created among students. Many of the students were told to be careful regarding ‘KASHMIRI STUDENTS’ in particular.
The hostel authorities repeatedly instructed the students not to come out of their rooms and to be careful.
On the 13th of August, at around 3 p.m., two police constables in uniform and around 15-20 officials in plain clothes were seen sitting just outside the hostel gate. Two constables came inside the gate and started having conversation with the guards while around 10 officials were sitting in their cars inside the hostel campus.
Continue reading What exactly happened in Jamia Millia Islamia on 13th August? Jamia Millia Islamia Students