The left has been trying to portray the Shaheen Bagh protesters as being motivated by their wishes to save the Indian constitution, and their fervent desires to uphold the secular principles of the state, but their real motivations might have been a lot simpler — money.
The Delhi Police chargesheet filed at Karkardooma court has said that the women protesting against the CAA at locations such as Shaheen Bagh and near Jamia Millia Islamia (JMI) were paid “daily wages” by alleged conspirators behind the Northeast Delhi riots. “Shifa-Ur-Rehman (Jamia coordination committee member and president of Alumni Association of JMI) and others collected funds predominantly in cash and also in bank accounts and funded this sustenance of various sit-in protest sites by providing logistics and daily wages to lady protesters. AAJMI also provided mic, poster, banners, ropes, etc at gate number 7 of Jamia Millia protest site. AAJMI also paid for buses hired for protests. The daily expenditure of AAJMI ranged between Rs 5,000- 10,000 at protest site of Jamia gate number 7 alone,” it states. The police claim to have established this based on statements of witnesses and WhatsApp chats.
Even while the protests were on, there had been eyebrows raised about how the protesters were managing leave their jobs and household duties, and sit on protests for weeks on end. Questions were also raised around how protesters were getting three full meals at protest sites. In a viral video from the time, a Shaheen Bagh protester had claimed that the food at Shaheen Bagh just miraculously appeared, and was likely provided by the almighty Allah.
Now it turns out that it was provided by a bevy of leftist and radical Islamic organizations, that were cleverly using women as a front for their eventual plans. The Delhi police chargesheet says that the women were chosen for the protests to provide a “secular cover, gender cover and media cover” for the eventual rioting that followed. There had been other indications around how the protests were manufactured — several protesters were unable to explain what exactly they were protesting when asked by reporters.
These events now make a lot more sense, given how the Delhi Police has discovered that the Shaheen Bagh women were being financially incentivized to appear at the protests. It’s not uncommon for people attending rallies and protests in India to be paid — many attendees at political rallies and events are also similarly compensated — but the Shaheen Bagh protests eventually led to the deadly Delhi riots in which 53 people lost their lives, and questions will be raised around the motivations of the people who funded these protests and riots.