Protests over the Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) in the UP capital Lucknow have taken a violent turn. Violence has spread to many areas of the city. Two police posts were burnt during the disturbance while vehicles parked outside were reduced to ashes, too.
The protesters created a ruckus in Daliganj and Hazratganj areas of Lucknow. The area witnessed widespread acts of sabotage amid stone-pelting. To disperse the crowd, the police had to fire tear gas shells and charge with batons and sticks.
In Lucknow, miscreants set the medias OB vans on fire. In Sambhal in western Uttar Pradesh, the internet had to be shut down after a clash between police and rioters.
Rioters stoned and vandalised public and private properties to protest against the amended citizenship law in Lucknow’s Daliganj area. Police fired in the air in Thakurganj during violent protests. Mercifully, there is no report of any loss of life.
Two police posts were targeted during the protests. Satkhanda outpost in Thakurganj was burnt down after the rioters set on fire the Madayganj post. Vehicles parked outside the outpost were burnt. Vandalism and arson were witnessed in Khadra area and miscreants set several vehicles on fire.
Opposition in support of rioters in Lucknow
Earlier in Lucknow, Samajwadi Party and INC leaders went to the main gate of the Assembly to protest against the CAA. The police had to struggle a lot to remove them from there.
KD Singh Babu metro station was closed. Several activists, including UP INC head Ajay Kumar Lallu, have been taken into custody.
Due to protests against the citizenship law, there have been long traffic jams across roads in Lucknow. From Hazratganj, Nishatganj bridge to Parivartan Chowk, Hanuman Setu, vehicles are hardly moving. Thousands of people are stranded due to the jam. Mobs of rioters dot the stretch between the KD Singh Babu Stadium and the residence of the district magistrate.
Meanwhile, the protest against the CAA has disrupted the Lucknow Metro service. The entry and exit gates of the KD Singh Metro station have been closed under instructions of Uttar Pradesh Police. Trains are not stopping at this station. The Lucknow Metro Rail Corporation has stopped selling tickets at the KD Singh Metro station. The gates of this Metro station have been closed.
Police have made special arrangements for security of metro stations on Thursday for security reasons due to the protest. The number of security guards has been increased at the Metro station. Every incoming passenger is being monitored. Instructions have been given to stop suspicious-looking passengers. Officers in charge of operating the Metro stations are working in tandem with the police force. The stations are under extra vigil.
Lucknow SSP Kalanidhi Naithani said that the situation in Hussainabad was under control. The crowd had turned violent but the force patiently dispersed the people. He said that the mob dispersed after the use of mild force before properties could be damaged. The SSP said that, at present, the force has been moved to another location. Around 40-50 people responsible for the riots have been arrested across the district.
Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath has pledged to recover the losses from rioters after identifying them from CCTV footage and other videos. He named the opposition, including the INC, as the masterminds of the riots. Listen in: