Six killed as Anti-CAA protests spread to new cities

Updated: Dec 21, 2019, 09:32 IST | Agencies | Lucknow

Uttar Pradesh DGP claims 50 policemen seriously injured in violent clashes with the protesters

Stir intensified in Delhi, too, with protesters allegedly setting a car on fire in Daryaganj area
Stir intensified in Delhi, too, with protesters allegedly setting a car on fire in Daryaganj area

Lucknow: At least six people died as violent clashes with police rocked Uttar Pradesh on Friday while thousands rallied in Delhi and several other cities with tricolour and 'Save Constitution' banners as part of raging protests across states against the amended citizenship law and the proposed NRC.

Taking the nationwide toll to nine in two days, six people were killed during protests at various places in UP, where police retaliated with tear gas shells and rubber bullets after protests turned violent.

Director General of Police O P Singh told PTI that two people lost their lives in Bijnor and one each in Meerut, Sambhal and Firozabad. But officials reported a death in Kanpur as well. Singh added that over 50 policemen were seriously injured.

Policemen resorted to lathi-charge to disperse violent crowd. Pics/PTI
Policemen resorted to lathi-charge to disperse violent crowd. Pics/PTI

40 detained in Delhi
A car was set on fire in Delhi's Daryaganj area and protesters hurled stones at security personnel near Delhi Gate, while police used water cannons and lathi-charged a large group of protesters to disperse the crowd. The police detained 40 people, officials said.

Sporadic violence was reported from other parts of Delhi, Maharashtra and Karnataka-Kerala border areas as well, while authorities resorted to curbs on mobile internet and SMS services in various regions, including in parts of UP, Karnataka and Delhi. Some groups, however, offered roses to the police to underline peaceful nature of their protest.

US national joins stir
Among the huge number of anti-CAA protesters at Delhi Gate, a US national stood out for his support to an agitation in a foreign country. Arnold [name changed] claimed there was "a lot of solidarity" in the US for Indian students and minorities opposing the new citizenship law. "Religion as a criterion for determining citizenship is fundamentally wrong," he said.

BJP allies JD(U), LJP protest
The raging protests also saw some allies of the ruling BJP voicing their concerns. Bihar Chief Minister and JD(U) leader Nitish Kumar said the NRC will not be implemented in his state, while another BJP ally Lok Janshakti Party's (LJP) chief Chirag Paswan said the protests show the Centre has "failed" to dispel confusion among a significant section of society.

Earlier, Congress leader K C Venugopal also said the law will not be implemented in the party-ruled states. "The states cannot be forced to implement an unconstitutional legislation," he told PTI. However, a top Home Ministry official said that state governments have no powers to reject the implementation of the CAA. Meanwhile, another official said the government is ready to accept suggestions, if any, from the protesters and asserted that various efforts were being made to clear doubts of the people about the new law.

40
No.of people detained in Delhi

'Meant opinion poll, not referendum'

West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on Friday made a U-turn from her Thursday's remark over UN referendum on CAA and NRC. Banerjee said she had only suggested that an opinion poll be conducted by impartial experts of the country, the process for which could be observed by the United Nations.

'No one will be asked for old documents'

No Indian citizen will be unduly harassed by asking to prove citizenship by showing documents like birth certificates of parents or grandparents dating back to a period before 1971, the MHA said. "#Citizenship of India may be proved by giving any document relating to date of birth or place of birth or both. Such a list is likely to include a lot of common documents," MHA said.

K'taka min warns of Godhra-like situation

A video of Karnataka minister C T Ravi purportedly saying that a Godhra-like situation may arise if the majority community loses its patience surfaced on Friday. "Just because the majority community here is patient, you are trying to put fire everywhere. If they too are enraged and if the limit of their patience is breached, what happens thereafter — you need to look back once," he allegedy says in the video.

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