Barshashree bail rekindles hope for many jailed CAA protesters

Guwahati, July 23 (KMS): The bail of 19-year-old, Barshashree Buragohain booked under draconian law Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act (UAPA) on July 20 from Gawhati jail, rekindles hope for many Muslims arrested for taking part in protests against CAA (Citizenship Amendment Act) who are languishing in jail for the last two years on similar charges.

The reason for Ms Barshashree’s arrest happens to be a poem that she wrote and posted on Facebook. The title of the poem which is in Assamese says, ‘Akou Korim Rashtra Droh’ (will again rebel against the nation). The full line is; “Swadhin xurujor dixe akou ekhuj, Akou korim rashta druh” (One more step toward the sun of freedom, once again, I will commit treason).

This poem was construed as an anti-national poem by the BJP government in Assam and the B.Sc student of mathematics, at the Devicharan Barua (DCB) Girls College, in Jorhat, Barshashree was kept in judicial custody in Golaghat for two months till she got bail from the Guwahati High Court on July 20.

While many defended Buragohain creative impulses and her family asserted that the poem was not provocative, Assam Special Director General of Police (law and order) GP Singh tweeted that she was arrested as there was a “specific call to indulge in waging war against the state” in her Facebook post.

Her arrest had triggered widespread criticism across the state, with student bodies, opposition parties, and intellectuals demanding her early release. Many on social media have raised their concerns about the student potentially missing out on her second-semester exams which were scheduled to be held from July 16. Buragohain was granted permission from the court to appear in her degree exam which was held on July 16. She appeared for the examination under tight security arrangements.

There is a long list of Muslims who are languishing in Jail for the past two years and some prominent among them are Sharjeel Imam, Meeran Haider, Taahir Hussai, Ishrat Jahan, Khalid Saifi, Shifa-ur-Rahman, Siddique Kappan, etc. The bail granted to Ms Barshashree Buragohain and Mr Mohmmad Zubair of Alt News rekindles hope that those behind the bars of factious seditious charges may soon be out of prison.

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