Actor Swara Bhaskar, one of the vocal critics of new citizenship law, claimed on Tuesday that the BJP-led Centre was making all efforts to polarise people, but those who have been able to see through its 'divisive plans have rejected the party's narrative'. Bhaskar, while participating at a session at the 44th International Kolkata Book Fair, said citizens do not initially realise when their freedom is curtailed, as they try and adjust to the changes.
"It starts with someone telling us what to eat, what to read and which clothes to wear when you visit the house of God... it starts with small things," she said.
People in this country, however, have come to realise that the Constitution was in danger and many have rejected the 'divisive narrative' of the government, she claimed.
"That is why places like Shaheen Bagh and Park Circus are abuzz with protests. Students and women are now coming out on the streets with their own narratives," she said.
The 31-year-old actor thanked the anti-citizenship law agitators for 'awakening the conscience of the country' and asserted that the protests should have commenced earlier, when incidents of lynching were reported from several states.
"I find it interesting (that) women who were silent when men from their community were lynched...took to the streets upon finding out that the Constitution was in danger. They are protesting not to serve own interests, but for the future of the country's children," she claimed.
To a question about BJP leaders berating the anti- Citizenship (Amendment) Act protesters, Bhaskar said, "We are in a state where law enforcement agencies are of the view that unarmed students, sitting in a library, pose greater threat than gun-toting youths," Bhaskar, who had visited Jamia Millia University to express solidarity with the agitators, said.
Slamming trolls, who 'threatened to behead actor Deepika Padukone', she rued that none of them have been arrested.
"This is a country where vandals and criminals can threaten to behead Deepika Padukone, but no action is taken against them. Children performing in an anti-CAA play, however, can be slapped with sedition charges along with parents and teachers," she added.
Police in Karnataka has recently registered a sedition case against the principal and other authorities of a school in Bidar district for allowing students to stage a drama which allegedly 'portrays Prime Minister Narendra Modi in poor light'.