INDIA: MASS PROTESTS CONTINUE


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On Sunday, millions of Indian citizens continued the two months-long protests against the passage of the Citizenship Amendment Act, spearheaded by Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s ruling Hindu nationalist party, which grants citizenship to religious minorities – except Muslims – from neighboring countries.
Some seven million people in the state of Kerala formed a human chain that stretched 385 miles. Demonstrators read from the constitution’s preamble, which defines the country as a “secular democratic republic” and swore oaths to uphold it as part of the protest.
Last Wednesday, India’s Supreme Court, while ordering the Mahdi government to answer the more than 100 legal challenges to the validity of the Citizenship Amendment Act, would not issue a legal stay of the controversial law.
In 2019, over two million people living in India were dropped from the citizenship list, as the government continues to move the country towards a Hindu state. Protestors are concerned the new law will end citizenship rights for millions more.
The ongoing demonstrations have seen millions of citizens of many nationalities and religious affiliations take to the streets in all regions of the country despite harsh reprisals by the government. To date, from police actions, nearly 30 citizens have been killed and hundreds injured, and thousands have been arrested.
The lieutenant governor of the National Capital Territory of Delhi declared that police have the right to detain people without charge.
And, last week, the political leader of the West Bengal region called on his chief minister to use live ammunition against protestors and boasted that police “shot these people [protesters] like dogs.”
TREND FORECAST: As economic conditions continue to worsen, standards of living further decline and unemployment rises, demonstration and strikes will escalate across India beyond those taking to the streets in opposition to the Citizenship Amendment Act.  
 In response, India’s military/police forces will violently clamp down on protesters.

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