New Delhi: Thousands of people across the country today took to the streets in a citizens’ protest named ‘Not in My Name’ against the recent incidents of mob killings.
Holding placards that read: “Break the Silence”, “No Place for Islamophobia” and “Shed Hate not Blood” among others, the protesters said they had gathered to send out a message that there is a need to unite for a cause.
At the Jantar Mantar in the national capital, among those who took part were family members of 17-year-old Junaid, who was stabbed to death on June 22 on-board a train, which he had taken with his two brothers after Eid shopping in Delhi.
A group of men allegedly hurled communal slurs and attacked them after an altercation over seats.
On Wednesday night, over a 100-strong mob attacked a Muslim man on the suspicion that he had slaughtered a cow after finding the carcass of a bovine near his house in Giridih district of Jharkhand.
The “Not In My Name” campaign began after a Facebook post by filmmaker Saba Dewan against the stabbing of Junaid.
He sought to “reclaim the Constitution” and “resist the onslaught” on the right to life and equality.
In Mumbai, people braved rains to come out in large numbers.
Actors Shabana Azmi, Konkona Sena Sharma, Rajat Kapoor and Ranvir Shorey and social media activist Arpita Chatterjee were among those who participated in the protest held at Carter Road in suburban Bandra.
Azmi said these are not isolated incidents and there is a need for a stringent law against the perpetrators.
In Kolkata, among the protesters was filmmaker Aparna Sen. She said she was protesting against something which “we do not support and that is attacking any religious community”.
She stressed that liberal voice has to be heard.
Protests in other cities
Protests were also held in cities like Allahabad, Bengaluru, Chandigarh, Jaipur, Kochi, Lucknow, Patna and Thiruvananthapuram.
Meanwhile, a Delhi government employee was among four persons arrested Wednesday in connection with the lynching of a Muslim youth on-board a train, police said.
With these arrests, the number of those held in the case, which triggered nationwide outrage, has reached five.
However, the “prime accused”, who had stabbed 17-year-old Junaid to death, is still at large.
“We have arrested four more persons, including three youths, aged between 24 and 30 years and a 50-year-old man,” Kamaldeep Goel, the Superintendent of Police (SP), Government Railway Police (GRP), Faridabad, told PTI over phone.