Two women lawyers were allegedly evicted from their rented home in Delhi after members of a campaign led by Home Minister Amit Shah saw a poster opposing the Citizenship Amendment Act hanging outside their balcony on Sunday, The New Indian Express reported. The mob attacked their house the moment Shah left the door-to-door campaign he was leading in Lajpat Nagar to mobilise support for the law, the women claimed.
Surya Rajappan, one of the women, said the group tried to forcibly enter their home. She said members of the rally “started getting enraged and visibly agitated” after they saw the placard, and began to verbally harass and intimidate them with threats and derogatory and misogynistic remarks.
“To register our peaceful protest, my flatmate and I displayed a home-made handcrafted banner from our apartment balcony, just as the rally, led by Shah, was passing through our lane,” Rajappan told The New Indian Express. “I also raised certain slogans such as ‘We reject CAA, We reject NRC’.”
In another statement on social media, Rajappan said: “A mob of around 150 people collected on the street below our apartment. They were evidently enraged and threatened by the simple act of two girls protesting peacefully to tackle what they perceived as an obvious ‘threat’ to their propaganda parade.”
The group allegedly took away the protest banner hanging from the women’s balcony and some members “forced their way up the stairs which lead to our residence and threatened to break down the door if we did not let them in”, Rajappan said.
The woman said the mob kept “violently banging” at their door. They were unable to leave as the house owner, part of the mob, had locked a common entrance that led to the staircase. The women then called their friends for help, but even they were allegedly pushed around and threatened with violence.
“The fervent pleas of our friends that we should be allowed to peacefully leave the house were ignored by the frenzied mob,” Rajappan said. “For 3-4 hours, we were trapped inside the house with an angry mob outside our house. In the meanwhile, our landlord informed us that we had been evicted from our residence.”
The woman’s father was let into the premises with a police officer after a long time, she said. The police then recorded the women’s complaint against the mob. The women left the house with their essential items after seven hours under the protection of the police.
Rajappan said further: “Over the course of the last 48 hours, we have feared for our lives and for our safety; our character and upbringing have also been questioned (as is now customary when any Indian woman speaks out against the BJP). We have also been accused of craving media attention – only for exercising our constitutional right to dissent peacefully.”