Clashes between two groups in north-eastern Delhi on Monday over the Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) took a violent turn, claiming the lives of seven citizens. In the areas of Delhi’s Jafrabad-Maujpur, clashes erupted between groups supporting and opposing the CAA on Monday and protesters set fire to several houses, shops and vehicles and threw stones at each other. The riots continued on Tuesday, killing seven people.
In addition, at least 50 people, including paramilitary forces and Delhi policemen, have been injured in the violence.
In a significant development, the man identified as Shahrukh, who had fired eight rounds at the police during the anti-CAA riots in Delhi yesterday, has been arrested. A video showing him opening fire at the police and a cop standing his ground had gone viral on social media yesterday.
In view of the violent protests, not only the exits and entries of many Metro stations had to be closed, but also additional deployment of security forces was made.
In view of the frightening situation in Delhi, the Delhi government and the Union Home Ministry and representatives of the AAP, BJP and Congress met with high-ranking officers of Delhi Police. Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal emerged from the meeting to tell reporters that the discussions were positive and that all the parties concerned suggested solutions to the problem, rising above party lines.
Ten notable happenings related to the situation in Delhi follow.
- The death toll in the violent incidents in north-eastern Delhi over the CAA and NRC has risen to seven. A policeman killed yesterday is among the dead. Dozens of vehicles have been set ablaze in this violent demonstration. Police have imposed Section 144 in the violence-affected areas.
- Former CIC Wajahat Habibullah, others have moved the Supreme Court, seeking registration of an FIR in the recent violence over the CAA in Delhi. The Bhim Army has filed a petition in the Supreme Court, blaming BJP politician Kapil Mishra for the Delhi violence.
- Three firefighters were injured in the violence on Monday in north-eastern Delhi. A senior department official said on Tuesday that he had received about 45 calls from violence-hit areas. He said when the personnel reached the troubled spot on Monday after receiving information about an incident of fire on the phone, the demonstrators threw stones at a fire engine and set the rest on fire. He said that three firemen had been injured in the incident.
- Another stone-pelting incident came to light on Tuesday morning in Maujpur and Brahmapuri over the CAA. Some people set the tyre market in Karawal Nagar on fire. Home Minister Amit Shah convened an emergency meeting which included police officers, Lieutenant Governor Anil Baijal and Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal, which was reportedly positive.
- All schools in north-eastern Delhi have been closed due to the riots. Government and private schools in north-eastern Delhi have been closed on Tuesday. Home exams to be held in schools have been cancelled too. Delhi Education Minister Manish Sisodia has requested that the board examination be postponed. Chief Minister Kejriwal has called for peace and renunciation of violence.
- In the violence-hit areas, the situation did not calm down last night. There have been instances of sporadic violence throughout the night. Riots continued throughout the night in various areas of Gokalpuri, Ghonda, Bhajanpura and Yamuna Vihar. Mobs looted shops and set vehicles on fire. Throughout the night, people sat outside the houses on vigil in fear that rioters would arrive any moment.
- Following the riots between pro-CAA and anti-groups in Jafrabad, Maujpur, Chand Bagh, Khureji Khas and Bhajanpura, the police released tear gas shells and also lathi-charged the mobs to disperse the protesters. Security forces conducted a flag march to control the situation and prohibitory orders have been imposed. However, sporadic clashes continued late in Maujpur and other areas.
- Delhi Metro has decided to keep Jafrabad, Maujpur, Babarpur, Gokulpuri, Johri Enclave and Shiv Vihar Metro stations closed. Delhi Metro Rail Corporation (DMRC) tweeted to inform the people that Jafrabad, Maujpur-Babarpur, Gokulpuri, Johri Enclave and Shiv Vihar Metro stations would remain closed until further notice. Trains will not go beyond the Welcome Metro station. Jafrabad and Maujpur-Babarpur metro stations were closed on Sunday due to violent clashes between CAA opponents and supporters. The remaining three stations remained closed on Monday as well.
- A large number of people protesting against the CAA had blocked the road on Sunday, following which clashes erupted between supporters and opponents of the CAA in Jafrabad. Similar protests started in many other areas of Delhi. In Maujpur on Sunday, BJP leader Kapil Mishra called a meeting demanding that the police remove anti-CAA protesters within three days. Soon after, members of the two groups pelted stones at each other, forcing the police to release tear gas shells.
- After the meeting with MLAs, Chief Minister Kejriwal held a press conference on the violence in north-east Delhi of Delhi and said that hospital administrations had been asked to provide medical facilities to the people. Also, the fire department has also been asked to be ready. He said that MLAs living in the border area have said that people are coming from outside in Delhi. “Such people need to be stopped and suspicious people should be arrested,” he said. The chief minister said that the police force deployed is quite low. He said that temples and mosques in violence-affected areas should issue appeals to maintain peace.