The Death of a Culture of Protest

Politics

The Death of a Culture of Protest

Illustration: Akshita Monga

W

ednesday marked the beginning of an early summer solstice in Delhi. It also marked the end of the culture of peaceful protests in the country.

Ironically, it was a seminar on “Culture of Protest” that set the ball rolling. On February 21, Umar Khalid of JNU fame was scheduled to speak on the subject after he received an invite from Wordcraft, Ramjas College’s Literary Society. But even before he arrived at the campus, he was surrounded by members of RSS’s student wing, Akhil Bhartiya Vidyarthi Parishad, and Delhi University Students’ Union, who then cut off electricity to the hall and hurled stones and tree branches through the window panes of the venue, as chants of “Vande Mataram” and “Bharat Mata Ki Jai” filled the air – the two slogans on which the idea of patriotism has pivoted over the last year.

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