Pan-India protests over CAA: Sec 144 in place; People pushed back from Red Fort, protest at Sunehri
New Delhi, Dec 19: In view of violence during demonstrations in different parts of the country against the amended citizenship law, Section 144 of CrPC has been imposed in multiple states including Uttar Pradesh and parts of Delhi including near the Red fort.
Delhi Police on Thursday imposed prohibitory orders under CrPC Section 144 near the Red Fort ahead of a protest against the amended Citizenship Act, officials said. Lahori Gate, Kashmere Gate and Kotwali police stations will come under this order, they said. Police have already denied the permission for the protest near the Red Fort citing law and order issues, but the protestors said they will go ahead with the march.
People from various parts of the city converged near Sunehri Masjid in Old Delhi, after being pushed back by police from the historic Red Fort, to protest against the Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) on Thursday.
Owing to the prohibitory orders imposed in the national capital, the Delhi Police detained protesters who reached the Red Fort to protest against the CAA and placed barricades to stop others from reaching there.
After being pushed back, they converged near Sunehri Masjid, where slogans of 'Hum Honge Kamyaab', 'Inquilab Zindabad' filled the air. Slogans of 'CAA Se Azaadi and NRC Se Azaadi' were also raised by the crowd, which included locals from Old Delhi and East Delhi and students. Protesters were carrying the national flag.
On a day, the national capital recorded the coldest day of the season, protesters, wrapped in their winter clothes, carried on their demonstration. Mohammad Kazim, an organiser, said 20-22 buses, carrying protesters, who were detained, were taken to various locations. There were others who alleged that political leaders were trying to hijack the protest. "We won't budge from here. Politicians are diluting our protest. Our goal was to protest at Red Fort and no one is willing to go anywhere else," said Abid Ahmed.
Earlier in the day, scores of protestors were detained by the Delhi Police near Red Fort when they tried to take out a march in defiance of the prohibitory orders imposed there to protest the Citizenship (Amendment) Act. Swarajya Abhiyan chief Yogendra Yadav was among those detained, officials said.
Protestors, which included activists and students, were dragged into buses in a bid to clear the area. Holding placards and shouting slogans, the protesters allowed themselves to be escorted to the buses. "I know many of our mates are being detained, despite that many have gathered. The citizenship of this country cannot be divided and this is our protest call today," Yadav said.
Two rallies were scheduled to be held in Delhi, from the iconic Red Fort and Mandi House. However, by yesterday evening the police sent a refusal letter for the protest march at Red Fort, saying the request could not be "acceded to from law and order traffic point of view". At Mandi House, demonstrators will gather at noon and will march towards the Parliament Street.
In Uttar Pradesh, police said no permission has been given for protests as prohibitory orders are in place in the entire state.
"Section 144 (prohibiting unlawful assembly) of CrPC is in force and no permission for any gathering has been given for December 19. Please do not participate. Parents are also requested to counsel their children," DGP OP Singh said in a tweet.
Samajwadi Party and some other organisations have announced that they will protest against the Citizenship (Amendment) Act on Thursday.
In Bengaluru, Sec 144 has also been imposed throughout the city including Rural district from 6 am today for the next 3 days in view of two demonstrations planned in the city at 11 am.
The ban in Mangaluru would be for two days from Thursday morning till Saturday midnight, the commissioners of police of the two cities said in their separate orders. No one will be allowed to carry out protests, demonstrations, burst crackers or display weapons, the orders said.
Police deployed in Town Hall area as a 'bandh' has been called by a consortium of Left-wing & Muslim organisations in Karnataka today in protest against Citizenship Act & NRC.
Meanwhile, Karnataka CM B S Yediyurappa had said, "I request Muslim friends, you'll face no problem because of this act [CAA]. We are all here for you. Please cooperate. Let's maintain peace. No protest for or against. Section 144 is in place. Request everyone to cooperate."
Anti-CAA and NRC protests were witnessed in Bihar early on Thursday morning as CPI-M workers blocked a railway track leading to Laheriasarai Railway Station in Darbhanga district. Meanwhile, Left Parties will observe a bandh to protest against the Citizenship (Amendment) Act, 2019, and National Register for Citizens. The Bihar Pradesh Congress Committee (BPCC) has extended its full support to the call for 'Bihar Bandh'.
In Kolkata, Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee has been holding foot marches against the Citizenship Amendment Act and the National Registry of Citizens for the last three days, a rally will begin at noon from Dharmatala in Kolkata. Banerjee at her rally yesterday, criticised Union Home Minister Amit Shah for not maintaining peace as protests continued against the law.
Meanwhile, Peaceful protests against the amended citizenship act are scheduled in a number of cities today including Delhi, Mumbai, Kolkata and others. None of the protests has been cancelled even after the imposition of Section 144. It remains to be seen whether prohibitory orders succeed in quelling anti-CAA protests across most parts of the country.