Thousands of people have been agitating in various parts of the country since December 11, when the contentious citizenship bill was passed in Parliament. On December 21 students of Jamia Millia Islamia staged a protest again outside the university campus against the Citizenship (Amendment) Act (CAA). In Uttar Pradesh death toll due to violence rose to 11, said Officials. A call for a bandh was given in Rampur by anti-CAA protesters even as CrPc Section 144, which bars assembly of people, was in force in the region. While historian Ramachandra Guha termed CAA as "immoral", Mayawati said the Centre should give up 'stubborn stand' on citizenship law.
Here are the latest updates:
Delhi Court sends 15 arrested in connection with Daryaganj violence to 2-day custody
Fifteen people arrested in connection with the violence in Old Delhi’s Daryaganj area were sent to two days’ judicial custody by a city court on Saturday.
The police had sought 14 days’ judicial custody of the arrested people.
One of those arrested claimed he was a juvenile. However, the police said he told them he is aged 23.
BJP govt using dictatorial measures: Priyanka Gandhi
Congress general secretary Priyanka Gandhi Vadra on Saturday accused the BJP government of using dictatorial measures to suppress the voice of people as she condemned arrest of students, intellectuals, journalists and social workers protesting against the Citizenship (Amendment) Act and a possible NRC.
The NRC and the new citizenship law were against the Constitution of India, she said in a statement.
The people of the country would not allow any such attack on the Constitution but the government was bent upon using force and violence against protesters, she added.
She also appealed to people to follow the path of non-violence and truth as propagated by Mahatma Gandhi to protect the Constitution and not allow any attack on it.
Clashes erupt in Rampur; several people, including policemen, injured
Clashes broke out between anti-CAA protesters and police in which several people, including policemen, were injured in Uttar Pradesh’s Rampur on December 21, officials said.
Around 400 to 500 people gathered here to protest against the Citizenship (Amendment) Act amid a bandh call, they said.
Five protesters were hospitalised and the condition of one of them was stated to be critical, District Magistrate Aunjaneya Singh said.
“Over a dozen policemen also suffered minor injuries during stone pelting by protesters that included children between the ages of 12 and 18 years,” Mr. Singh told PTI .
Another dozen protesters also suffered minor injuries in tear gas shelling by the police, he said.
A call for a bandh was given in Rampur on Saturday by anti-CAA protesters even as CrPc Section 144, which bars assembly of people, was in force in the region. — PTI
Jamia students protest outside university campus
Jamia Millia Islamia students staged a demonstration yet again outside the varsity campus against amendments in the citizenship law, days after violent clashes between police and agitationists in its vicinity.
The demonstration, begun by woman students of the Central varsity, was later joined by its male students as well as alumni and “outsiders”, with the protesters ranting the air with slogans like “Ladke lenge azadi” (get independence after fighting) and “Inquilab Zindabad”.
As protesting crowd swelled by minutes, the women students specifically asked them not to use abusive or unparliamentary language during the protest.
The varsity has been at the forefront of the protest against the citizenship law.
Participating in the protest, a 76-year-old woman, Nafiz Ikram said, “You all are leading a movement against what is wrong. Don’t step back. Don’t get scared of police. You are the real police who are fighting to protect our Constitution”.
A protester, who had come from Bihar to join the protest, said, “The rich have proof of their identity or they will procure it somehow. How will the labourers and workers, who migrate from U.P. and Bihar, manage to get the proof?”
Students also took out a march against the Citizenship (Amendment) Act, 2019.
Some former students of the university came to the spot with their children.
“I am with students of this country. What happened at Jamia Millia last week was unpardonable. My son is here carrying a poster and I want my son to grow up in a secular nation and not a biased country,” said an alumnus, who had brought his five-year-old son to the protest venue. — PTI
Over 1,000 academicians release statement in support of CAA
As many as 1,100 academicians and research scholars from various universities across India and abroad released a statement in support of the amended Citizenship Act on December 21.
In the statement, they appealed to every section of the society “to exercise restraint and refuse to fall into the trap of propaganda, communalism and anarchism”.
“We also note with deep anguish that an atmosphere of fear and paranoia is being created in the country through deliberate obfuscation and fear-mongering, leading to violence in several parts of the country,” the statement said.
The signatories to the statement congratulated the Parliament for “standing up for forgotten minorities and upholding the civilisational ethos of India” and “providing a haven for those fleeing religious persecution”.
Situation improving amid heavy security deployment in Delhi areas
The situation in areas hit by violence during protests against the new citizenship law is gradually returning to normal, police said, and assured that a heavy deployment of security personnel has been made in Old Delhi and Seemapuri areas.
Stone-pelting and incidents of violence were reported from Daryaganj in Old Delhi and Seemapuri in northeast part of the national capital on Friday.
Manish Seth, secretary of Daryaganj Traders’ Association, said all shops in the area opened on Saturday morning and there’s no unrest. He said police have been keeping a tight vigil.
A senior police officer from Shahdara district said situation was under control in the area.
“Delhi Police have dominated the area and are conducting flag marches since Friday evening to ensure that no untoward incident is reported,” he added.
The Jamia Millia Islamia, which has been seeing protests against the law, has a public meeting lined up by activists on the Citizenship (Amendment) Act and a protest-march in the day.
On Friday, a clash between police and protesters had ensued in Daryaganj, prompting police to use water cannon on the agitators, some of whom had turned violent and set on fire a car. Incidents of stone-pelting were also reported from Seemapuri, where an additional Deputy Commissioner of police suffered minor injuries. — PTI
21 arrested for Delhi violence
21 persons have been arrested in connection with violence that erupted in Seemapuri and Delhi Gate on December 20.
Among the 21 arrested, 16 of them were from Delhi, including Bhim Army chief Chandra Shekhar Aazad and 5 from Seemapuri. — reports Hemani Bhandari
Bhim Army chief Chandra Shekhar Aazad has been arrested in connection with the violence in Old Delhi’s Daryaganj, police said on December 21.
Mr. Aazad’s outfit had organised a march from Jama Masjid to Jantar Mantar on December 20 against the new citizenship law, despite not having permission from police.
On Friday evening, after security personnel tried to detain him during the march, Mr. Aazad surfaced inside the mosque. He had given the Delhi police a slip to reach the mosque.
He came outside Jama Masjid early on Saturday and was detained. He was arrested later, police said. After being detained, Mr. Aazad was kept at the Crime Branch office in Chanakyapuri since he said he was unwell. He was later handed over to the central district police, they added.
Following his arrest, he was taken to a hospital for a medical check-up and will be produced in a court. Police suspect he instigated the crowd which turned violent near Delhi Gate and burnt a car.
The protesters marching towards Jantar Mantar from Jama Masjid were stopped by police and paramilitary personnel near Delhi Gate, after which they turned violent and set a car on fire and damaged a few other vehicles. Police resorted to lathi-charge and used a water cannon to control the situation.
On Friday, Aazad had urged his supporters to carry on the protest against the contentious law peacefully. “Those who are indulging in violence are not our people. Our peaceful protest continues at the historic Jama Masjid. Ambedkarites do not indulge in violence,” he had tweeted.
RJD supporters block roads during Bihar bandh
The Rashtriya Janata Dal supporters and workers blocked roads and disrupted movement of trains at different places in Bihar on Saturday during the bandh call given by them in protest against the Citizenship (Amendment) Act (CAA) and National Register for Citizens (NRC).
CAA, NRC ploys to divert attention from serious issues, says Sharad Pawar
Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) president Sharad Pawar slammed the NDA government on December 21, saying the Citizenship (Amendment) Act (CAA) and the proposed National Register of Citizens (NRC) were “ploys to divert” attention from serious issues plaguing the country.
“CAA and NRC are ploys to divert people’s attention from serious issues that the country is facing,” he told reporters in Pune.
At least 11 killed in Uttar Pradesh violence, say officials
At least 11 people, including an 8-year-old boy, have lost their lives in Uttar Pradesh as the protests against the Citizenship (Amendment) Act turned violent in the State, officials said on December 21.
After Friday prayers, protesters clashed with police at several places in the state and hurled stones and torched vehicles, they said.
Siddaramaiah barred from entering Mangaluru city till Sunday midnight
Former Karnataka Chief Minister Siddaramaiah has been served a notice by Mangaluru police barring his entry into the commissionerate limits till Sunday midnight.
The Leader of the Opposition was to visit the coastal city on Sunday to meet the families of the two people who were killed in police firing during anti-Citizenship (Amendment) Act protest on Thursday.
CPI MP Binoy Viswam, five party workes detained
CPI Rajya Sabha MP from Kerala Binoy Viswam and some party activists who staged a protest in Mangaluru against the CAA defying curfew, were detained, police said.
The protesters raised ‘Save India, Save Democracy’ slogans and criticised the Yediyurappa government for its actions against those protesting against the new law.
Six protesters, including Binoy Viswam, were detained, police said. — PTI
Normal life hit in Mangaluru as curfew continues for second day
The continuation of curfew beyond 36 hours in Mangaluru city, which witnessed violence during the protest against the Citizenship (Amendment) Act and the killing of two people on Thursday, affected people who struggled to procure daily essentials on Saturday.
20 detained, 130 booked for violence in Maharashtra
Twenty people have been detained and 130 booked in Hingoli district in Marathawada region of Maharashtra for allegedly damaging public property and rioting during separate protests against the contentious Citizenship (Amendment) Act, an official said on Saturday.
Historian Guha terms CAA as “immoral”
Eminent historian and writer Ramachandra Guha on December 21 termed the Citizenship Amendment Act as “immoral” and “against the spirit of the Constitution” and said a wise and just government would withdraw it.
He also noted that immediate withdrawal of the NRC was a necessary first step to restore trust and heal the nation.
“To make two things absolutely clear. 1. The immediate withdrawal of the NRC is a necessary first step to restore trust and heal the nation. 2. The CAA is immoral and against the spirit of the Constitution. A wise and just Government would withdraw it too,” Mr. Guha tweeted. — PTI
Mayawati says Centre should give up ‘stubborn stand’ on citizenship law, NRC
BSP President Mayawati on Saturday asked the Centre to give up its “stubborn stand” on the new citizenship law and NRC and withdraw its decisions.
“Now that voices opposed to the CAA and NRC have started coming from within the NDA, the central government should give up its stubborn stand and withdraw its decisions,” she said in a tweet in Hindi.
(With inputs from Agencies)