- Supreme Court had appointed mediators to speak to Shaheen Bagh protesters
- They have asked the protesting women for a dialogue away from media
- Shaheen Bagh has become the epicentre of anti-CAA protests
Supreme Court-appointed mediators Sanjay Hegde and Sadhana Ramachandran visited Delhi's Shaheen Bagh - the epicentre of the agitation against the contentious Citizenship Amendment Act or CAA -- today to speak to the women who have been sitting in protest for more than two months. The resulting blockade of an arterial road has been repeatedly flagged by the BJP as a law and order problem and was made the centrepiece of its campaign for the Delhi assembly election.
The two senior advocates were named as mediators on Monday as the matter ended up in court. They have been tasked with persuading the protesters to continue their agitation in another location, so the road can re-open and commuters do not face problems.
"The Supreme Court has upheld your right to protest. We will listen to everyone. We would come up with such a solution that it would become an example for the world," Sadhana Ramachandran told the protesters.
The mediators have asked the protesting women for a dialogue away from the media. The women, however, want it to take place in presence of the reporters.
"The right to protest is a fundamental right," the court said. "But there are lines and boundaries... if everyone starts blocking roads, where will people go?"
The Shaheen Bagh protests have made headlines worldwide and inspired protests across the country.
In Delhi, the protests became a subject of hate speech, with several leaders of the BJP suggesting that bullets be used to deal with traitors against the country.
But in view of the sensitive nature of the issue, no action was taken against the protesters.
On Sunday, the women had started a march to Amit Shah's residence to have a dialogue with the Union Home Minister. But they turned back after the police assured them of an appointment. So far, they have not been given one.
The women had decided to talk to Mr Shah after his open invitation at the Times Now Summit last week. Anyone with doubts on the CAA could seek an appointment from his office and he would be willing to meet them within the next three days, he had said.