As Mobile Internet Remains Suspended, Walls, ‘Gamusa’ Turn Protest Scrolls In Assam

Most of the walls wore ‘NO CAB’ messages in capital letters in English and Assamese


As the mobile internet services have remained suspended for more than a week now, protesters are venting out their ire against the controversial Citizenship Amendment Act, on public walls. Even the traditional Axomiya ‘gamusas’ have turned into a protest scroll in the state.

Most of the walls along the prominent areas of the city including Dispur, Dighalipukhuri, GS Road had spray paints with ‘anti-CAB’ and ‘anti-BJP’ messages as they could vent our their resentment on the social media.

It may be mentioned that the Rajya Sabha on December 11th, 2019 passed the contentious Citizenship (Amendment) Bill which seeks to grant Indian citizenship to the people belonging to the Hindus, Jains, Christians, Sikhs, Buddhists, and Parsis who have become the victims of religious persecution in Pakistan, Bangladesh, and Afghanistan and entered India on or before December 31st, 2014.

Assam including other Northeastern(NE) states have been on the boil as violent protests broke out after the bill was passed in the upper house. The Guwahati streets turned into a battlefield as the police resorted to blank firing, shelling tear gas, water canons who fought back. Indefinite curfew was imposed in Guwahati as internet services were suspended in the evening hours of December 11th, 2019.

The elegant Assamese ‘Gamusa’ became a symbol of protest as protesters wore ‘Gamusas’ around their neck to vent their agitation against the act. Slogans like ‘Joi Aai Axom’(Hail Mother Assam) rent the air.

Even after the situation turned normal since December 16th, 2019 after broadband services were restored and curfew completely lifted in the city most of the walls wore ‘NO CAB’ messages in capital letters in English and Assamese.

Photo: TIME8