Police Action Against Anti-CAA Kolam Sparks Protest Across TN
Kolams with anti-CAA and anti-NRC messages were drawn outside DMK leader and Lok Sabha MP Kanimozhi’s house.
What would have been a small but innovative protest on a street in Chennai’s Besant Nagar has now blown into a statewide phenomenon. On Sunday, police had detained seven people who had drawn kolams or rangolis outside houses and on the streets with slogans against the Citizenship (Amendment) Act (CAA) and National Register of Citizens (NRC).
This has prompted many people across Tamil Nadu including political leaders to join the protest by drawing similar kolams in front of their houses too.
Elaborate kolams with anti-CAA and anti-NRC messages were drawn outside DMK leader and Lok Sabha MP Kanimozhi’s house in CIT Colony on Sunday night. In fact, the wordings 'Venadam CAA NRC' (We don't want CAA NRC') with two kolam designs on the sides was painted in front of her house as rain would have otherwise washed away the rice or lime stone powder with which these designs are generally drawn.
In a few hours, similar kolams came up outside the homes of MK Stalin on Cenotaph Road and late DMK Patriarch M Karunanidhi's in Gopalapuram.
What the Chennai Police Did
On Sunday, the Chennai police detained five residents from Besant Nagar, who had put kolams on the streets, outside houses, with slogans against the CAA and NRC.
Two advocates who arrived at the police station were also detained by the police. While the citizens condemned the police action on the protesters stating that they had the right to dissent, the Assistant Commissioner of Police, who gave orders to detain the protesting citizens said that small group could have grown and become a law and order issue and hence it was imperative to prevent it.
The detention, however, sparked outrage across the state and by Sunday night many more people started replicating the innovative mode of protest. On Monday morning, ‘DMK Kolam Protest’ and ‘Kolam against CAA’ were trending on Twitter with hundreds of users talking about it and uploading pictures of their kolams on the micro-blogging platform.
(This story has been published in an arrangement with The News Minute)
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