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Anti-CAA protests: 21 hurt as protesters clash with police in Delhi

Free for all: Protesters clashing with the police at Seelampur in New Delhi on Tuesday.

Free for all: Protesters clashing with the police at Seelampur in New Delhi on Tuesday.   | Photo Credit: PTI

Anti-CAA agitation takes violent turn in Seelampur; two police booths set on fire, two police bikes damaged

Twenty-one people were injured when a protest at Seelampur in east Delhi against the Citizenship (Amendment) Act (CAA), the National Register of Citizens (NRC) and the police action against students at Jamia Millia Islamia University in the capital turned violent on Tuesday.

 

Two police booths were set on fire and three vehicles, including two police bikes, were damaged, the police said.

“A total of 21 persons sustained injuries, including 15 security personnel and six members of the public. The injured include three Rapid Action Force officials, 12 Delhi police officials and six members of the public,” Joint Commissioner of Police (Eastern Range) Alok Kumar said.

Two FIRs registered

Mr. Kumar said two FIRs had been registered in connection with the case — one at the Jaffrabad police station and the other at Seelampur — on the charges of rioting, arson and damage to public property.

The police said the protests were peaceful for four hours but towards the end, when the people were dispersing, some of them started throwing stones.

 

“No one was lathi-charged, but tear-gas shells were used as a crowd control measure,” Mr. Kumar said.

Those present said the protest was peaceful when it began around 1.30 p.m., and it was only after the police lathi-charged them that they resorted to stone-throwing. The protesters also broke the windows of two buses.

“We wanted to go to the Seelampur Metro Station and block the road so that our voice will be heard,” said Guddu Khan, 24, one of the protesters. “But when we reached the Seelampur red light, the police stopped us and didn’t allow us to go forward. Though we tried to negotiate with them, they lathi-charged us and the people retaliated by throwing stones,” he said.

Some videos, thought to be of the incident and shot by the locals, showed the police beating the protesters with lathis.

 

Meanwhile, 10 persons were arrested in connection with Sunday’s clashes; none of them was a student. All have criminal backgrounds, and were identified from CCTV footage.

Multiple protesters said the Citizenship Amendment Act and the National Register of Citizens are against Muslims. They said they will continue to raise their voice against them.

According to the locals, some of the protesters who withdrew from the main road, due to the lathi charge, ransacked the police post and burnt motorcycles outside it. The protest went on till about 5 p.m. Police said a total of five companies including one from the Rapid Action Force (RAF), along with personnel from three districts, have been deployed in the trouble spots.

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Printable version | Feb 25, 2020 1:06:34 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/21-hurt-as-protesters-clash-with-police-in-delhi/article30333803.ece

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