Students and activists took part in the demonstration to support the victims of the horrific war crimes committed in Gaza, which included the loss of lives of thousands of innocent children.
On October 23, 2023, a protest organized by the Students’ Federation of India in Delhi took place at the Embassy of Israel in New Delhi. This protest was an expression of solidarity with Palestine and a strong plea to stop the ongoing violence committed by Israeli forces in Gaza. Around 2 p.m. on October 23rd, a large gathering of supporters, including social activists and students from various universities and student organizations across Delhi, assembled near the Khan Market Metro station. Together, they initiated a united march towards the Embassy of Israel.
Upon reaching their destination, the protesters were met with a substantial police force that prevented them from advancing further. The authorities detained the demonstrators, leading to a temporary halt to their protest. An hour later, a second group of students, holding placards in support of Palestine and chanting slogans, initiated another march towards the embassy. They, too, were soon detained by the police forces.
The backdrop to this protest is the ongoing conflict in Gaza, where Israeli airstrikes have resulted in the tragic loss of over 5,000 lives over two weeks. The history of the Israel-Palestine conflict is marked by turbulence and violence. As the attacks persist, people worldwide stand united in their call for an end to the loss of innocent lives and the provision of essential services to the people of Gaza through humanitarian aid.
Our conversations with the protestors helped us get a clear view of their motivations and perspectives on the issue. A student from Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU) who joined the protest explained that their objective was to oppose all forms of violence in Gaza and urge the governments to support the Palestinian cause. He emphasized that the march towards the Embassy was a means to convey their message to the media, the general public, and ultimately the government.
What is happening in one part of the world cannot leave us unaffected or detached. It is not right to assume that India and its citizens will remain untouched by the consequences of this conflict.
– One of the supporters present at the march.
The supporters stressed their point by saying,
Humari sankhya kam ho sakti hai, par humari awaaz buland hai
(Our numbers may be small, but our voices are powerful.)
Many protesters were also against police actions and the detention of their fellow participants. They requested the administration to respect their right to peaceful protest. Social activists present at the event underlined the historical importance of mass protests in India’s struggle for independence. They argued that the administration should not restrict their freedom to express their views.
The demonstrators also stressed that the world must not remain silent in the face of such a grave humanitarian crisis. They highlighted the need to stand in support of the oppressed and the innocent in Gaza, as one day India might require the international community’s support in times of crisis, just as the civilians of Gaza do now. The protestors’ believed in the importance of global solidarity and the responsibility of nations to support one another in the face of injustice and conflict.
Image Credits – Anshika Sharma for DU Beat
By DU Beat