Umar Khalid was arrested earlier this month under the strict Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act in connection of the violence in North-east Delhi earlier this month.
In defense of Umar Khalid over 200 academic, authors and filmmakers, including Noam Chomsky and Mira Nair from the United States put a joint statement demanding the Central government for release of Khalid.
“We call on the Government of India to free Umar Khalid and all those falsely implicated and unjustly incarcerated for protesting against the CAA-NRC that denies equal citizenship rights and to ensure that the Delhi Police investigates the Delhi riots with impartiality under the oath they took as public servants bound by the Constitution of India,” their statement read.
The big names also include actor Ratna Pathak Shah, authors Amitav Ghosh, Salman Rushdie and Arundhati Roy, and journalist and social activist P Sainath.
It claimed that Khalid “used the passion of his commitment to his country, marshalled his education and his voice to join the movement for equal citizenship, against the Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA)” that brought religion as a ‘criterion for citizenship’, and that it has no place in a secular country.