Anti-CAA protests rock Tamil Nadu

In Chennai, the protesters’ long march to the Secretariat was curtailed by the police; the protesters were stopped on Wallajah Road; other districts too, saw thousands gather to agitate

Updated - February 19, 2020 04:51 pm IST

Published - February 19, 2020 02:53 pm IST - Chennai

Thousands of anti-CAA protests gathered in Chennai near Wallajah Road on Wednesday morning

Thousands of anti-CAA protests gathered in Chennai near Wallajah Road on Wednesday morning

On Wednesday morning thousands of anti-CAA protesters gathered in Chennai for a long march to the Secretariat, defying the the Madras High Court’s order and deciding to lay siege to the Secretariat. However, the protest stopped on Wallajah Road near the Chepauk stadium, and a small make-shift stage was erected for speakers.

Other parts of the State too witnessed protests, with the protesters demanding the Tamil Nadu Assembly pass a resolution stating that the Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA), National Population Register (NPR) and National Register of Citizens (NRC) will not be implemented.

In Chennai, police estimate over 30,000 protesters -- including members of the Federation of Tamil Nadu Islamic and Political Organisations -- took part in the agitation. Hundreds of police personnel were deployed, and AnnaSalai was choked with traffic from around 10.30 a.m. up until 1.15 p.m. when the protesters began dispersing. A total of 5 drones and 20 additional CCTV cameras were used to monitor the protest.

T. Velmurugan, founder, Tamizhaga Vazhvurimai Katchi, addressed the protesters as they passed through Triplicane. He appreciated the Muslim organisations for conducting the protest and said that Muslims had played an important role in India’s independence struggle. It is wrong to check their antecedents, he said.

M. H. Jawahirullah of the Tamil Nadu Muslim Munnetra Kazagham, responding to the Chief Minister's statement in the Assembly that the CAA would not affect anyone, said that if the CAA had been brought in some decades ago, even M.G.Ramachandran, whose birthplace was Kandy in Sri Lanka, would not have been here and been the Chief Minister.

“We are protesting on behalf of all people of Tamil Nadu, including you and AIADMK members,” he said.



Members affiliated with various Islamic organisations took part in a protest led byJamaat Ul Ulama in front of the Tiruchi Collectorate. Over 3,000 members took part in the protest. Raising slogans, the protesters said that they would not cooperate and would refuse to show documents proving their citizenship.

Abdul Rahim, District Secretary, Jamaat Ul Ulama condemned the “inaction” of the Tamil Nadu government and said that the AIADMK is using late Chief Minister Jayalalithaa's name but is not following any of her ideologies. “Until she was alive, the BJP could not step foot into our State,” he said. The fight is not only for Muslims, it is also for the SriLankan Tamils, the poor and downtrodden, he stressed.


Around 7,000 people took part in the march organised by various Muslim organisations inCoimbatore. They assembled on State Bank Road which the police had to close in view of the protest. Traffic movement toCoimbatore railway station was obstructed as protesters occupied the road.

The protesters, including women and children, held the national flag and placards saying "No to CAA, NPR and NRC".

Police were seen using drones for surveillance as hundreds of protesters marched towards thecollectorate.

Apart from the police strength of nearly 2,000 persons, members of the Rapid Action Force were also deployed to take care of the law and order situation. The police also kept ready water cannons to deal with the protesters if required.



More than 400 people drawn from various Muslim outfits staged a protest in front of DistrictCollectorate in Vellore.

They raised slogans against BJP and AIADMK governments accusing them of taking the Muslims for a ride.

Speakers criticised Chief Minister Edapadi K Palaniswami's announcement in the Assembly that no Muslim was affected due to the implementation of the CAA. A large number of police personnel were posted near Collectorate to prevent any untoward incident.


Led by the Tamil Nadu Thowheed Jamath, protesters staged a dharna near the Tirunelveli District Collector’s office. This is the second protest in three days. On Sunday scores of protesters including children aged between three and 15, took part in a procession from V.S.T. junction and walked for around t3 km to reach theJinnah Thidal in Melapalayam.


Various Muslims organisations under the flapping tricolour thronged the protest venue at the Anna statue here giving a clarion call against the CAA inKrishnagiri.

Holding placards calling for a halt to the polarisation and divisiveness, protesters held out placards stating they were “Indians by citizenship and Muslims by religion”.

Placards shunning hatred and calling for unity dotted the protests landscape. Women and men came out in solidarity holding banners that stated “NafratChodo, Bharat Jodo, Samvidhan Bachao”.

Over 1,500 protests, braving the scorching heat, demanded the State assembly pass a resolution against the CAA.


Hundreds of Muslims and other leaders from various political parties, who attempted to lay siege to the office of theCollectorate in Madurai, Dindigul, Virudhunagar and Theni districts, as a mark of protest against the CAA, were stopped by the police on Wednesday


Members of various Muslim organisations protested in front of districtCollectorate on Wednesday and staged a road roko condemning the Central government. Close to 1,000 persons gathered in the area and raised slogans against the State and Central governments.

Leaders of Opposition parities like Indian National Congress,Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam, Communist Party of India and many others took part in the protests. National flags and placards condemning Centre and State governments were held by protesters.

Member of Parliament from Salem S.R.Parthibhan, addressed the protesters and charged that the Bill wouldn’t have been passed in the Parliament if AIADMK MPs and PMK ParliamentarianAnbumani Ramadoss had voted against it. He added that the BJP believes that it could do anything in the country since it has majority inLok Sabha. Mr. Parthibhan said that the protests would continue until the Act is withdrawn.

Resolutions were passed in the protests demanding the Centre to withdraw CAA, NRC and NPR.

The protesters later staged a road roko in front of the district Collectorate and traffic movement was affected for over half an hour at the Collectorate junction.

The protest came to an end around 12.30p.m. with the singing of the national anthem in Chennai. Protesters slowly began to disperse from the sites. Normal traffic was restored soon after the protest.

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