Jailed Bihar politician Lalu Yadav on Friday joined several other opposition leaders in protesting against the newly amended Citizenship Act, saying he was "still capable of taking on enemies, despite have suffered a thousand wounds".
The Rashtriya Janata Dal chief, currently serving sentences in fodder scam cases, posted an Urdu couplet on his Twitter handle, which is operated by his office. "The flames of my eyes are still burning bright and my principles are still alive, you people must not feel dejected as the sick man is still alive. I am still capable of taking on enemies despite having suffered a thousand wounds, thank God, my self-respect is intact," he tweeted, according to a translation by news agency PTI.
Lalu Yadav also posted an old NDTV clip where he is seen addressing his party workers, asking them to stand in support of minorities. He can also be heard targeting RSS Chief Mohan Bhagwat and the BJP government over the religious conversion row.
अभी आँखों की शमाएं जल रही हैं उसूल जिंदा है— Lalu Prasad Yadav (@laluprasadrjd) December 13, 2019
आप लोग मायूस मत होना अभी बीमार ज़िंदा है,
हजारों जख्म खाकर भी मैं दुश्मन के मुक़ाबिल हूँ
खुदा का शुक्र अब तक दिल-ए-खुद्दार जिंदा है। pic.twitter.com/Xs9FsBvtE8
The Citizenship Act, signed into law by President Ram Nath Kovind on Thursday night, will make it easier for non-Muslims refugees from Pakistan, Afghanistan and Bangladesh who entered India before 2015 to become Indian citizens. This has triggered protests across the Northeast, killing at least two people in Assam.
Violent protests have also erupted in other parts of the country. In Delhi, hundreds of Jamia Millia Islamia University students clashed with police on Friday after they were prevented from taking a protest march to the Parliament House. Protests also turned violent in West Bengal's Murshidabad district where a railway station complex was set on fire on Friday evening. The protesters also thrashed Railway Police Force personnel at the station complex.
Several non-BJP ruled states have declared their opposition to the controversial law, calling it "unconstitutional" and "discriminatory". These states have also said that they will not implement the law in their territories. Sources in the Union Home Ministry on Friday claimed that state governments are not empowered to halt the implementation of a law that comes under the centre's mandate.