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Friday 10 July 2020

Uttar Pradesh under siege: Riots against CAA claim 6 lives

The occasion of Friday namaz turned into an excuse to hold entire Uttar Pradesh to ransom, with police bearing the brunt of the attacks

Violence in the name of protesting against the amended citizenship law refuses to subside in Uttar Pradesh. The situation in Meerut has become uncontrollable. In the clash between miscreants and police here, one person has died after being shot at. In Kanpur, eight people were shot at.

From Kanpur, the frenzy spread to Firozabad and finally Bahraich. Stones were pelted at the police and public and private properties destroyed in Muzaffarnagar, Gorakhpur, Hapur, Bulandshahr, Amroha, Moradabad and Hapur districts. The activists-cum-rioters vandalised vehicles in Hapur and pelted stones indiscriminately.

The protesters went on a rampage in Meerut, Muzaffarnagar and Bijnor on Friday to make their point against the Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA). Three died due to bullet injuries in Meerut. In Bijnor, two people died after being shot at. One person has died in Muzaffarnagar.

Uttar Pradesh riot scene # 1: Meerut

In Meerut, where prayers were peaceful, police became cautious on receiving the information of some people distributing leaflets to protest against the amended citizenship law in the Kotwali area. When the police stopped them, the crowd created a ruckus, which led to a fierce clash between the police and the mob. Eventually, the police had to chase down the people who were creating a scene. The police have taken five of the six youths into custody.

After Lucknow yesterday, activists targeted Meerut, Muzaffarnagar and Bijnor on 20 December. In Meerut and Bijnor, one person each died of bullet injuries. Several hundred rounds were fired as Meerut witnessed wide-scale rioting. Three people were reported to be injured in bullet injuries in Muzaffarnagar where police posts along with vehicles of innocent motorists were set on fire.

Two Kashmiri youths selling almonds from the Jama Masjid of Kotwali in Meerut were arrested as suspects. In Jama Masjid of Meerut, Muslims tied black bands around their arms during the salah.

The State government banned the TET examinations to be held on 22 December due to violent protests in Uttar Pradesh. About 16 lakh candidates were going to appear in this examination.

Additional chief secretary of the government of Uttar Pradesh Avnish Kumar Awasthi informed the press that today five people died in violent demonstrations against the CAA.

The Ghaziabad administration, in view of violent protests over the CAA, has issued an order to keep all schools and colleges closed on Saturday.

Uttar Pradesh riot scene # 2: Bijnor

Sloganeering started after Muslims gathered at the Jama Masjid in Bijnor. After the prayers in Bijnor, thousands of Muslims reached the Civil Lines area and created a ruckus. A large number of them gathered in the Civil Line area and raised slogans and held demonstrations. The demonstrators then pelted stones indiscriminately. Some people, including journalists like the videographer of Amar Ujala were thrashed brutally, while the scribes were covering the protest. The activists smashed the journalist’s camera, damaging the expensive device irreparably.

People around tried to save the photojournalist but no one was spared by the raging mob that wielded sticks, blowing them at anybody they perceived as a challenger to their hooliganism. The police force that reached the spot later brought the situation under control but by then the protesters had ransacked several vehicles.

Uttar Pradesh riot scene #3: Kanpur

There was a ruckus in Kanpur, Unnao and Farrukhabad in UP after the prayers of the CAA. In Unnao, where protesters clashed with the police after the Friday prayers, the Muslim mob took recourse to stone-pelting near the Jama Masjid in Farrukhabad.

The police had to hurl tear gas shells to deal with the disturbances. The crowd protesting at the parade intersection of Kanpur suddenly turned violent. The mob threw stones at the police. Police reacted with lathi-charge and tear gas shells.

A crowd demonstrating at the parade intersection in Kanpur against the CAA suddenly turned violent. The mob threw stones at the police and the police tried to control the situation with lathi-charge. Activists took to the streets to protest in many areas including Babupurawa, Machria in Kanpur.

Police, PAC and Rapid Action Force are deployed throughout the city. Half a dozen areas including Babupurwa, Machria, Bada Chauraha are being stoned in the city.

A violent mob in Babupurwa broke into police vehicles and set them on fire. The miscreants vandalised some shops and ATMs, too.

Police opened fire at the miscreants in Babupurwa, injuring many people also because of the stampede that ensued. The injured were sent to the Lala Lajpat Rai Hospital (formerly Hallet Hospital). During the procession coming out of the parade area, miscreants vandalised several shops in front of the police. In Asarfabad of Jajmau, miscreants pelted stones at the police.

Reliance Jio stopped internet services in Kanpur and Unnao after violent protests in Lucknow over the changed citizenship law. In Unnao, the administration was alerted to the possibility of violence in the name of demonstrations after namaz.

Uttar Pradesh riot scene #4: Bhadohi

In view of violent protests taking place in protests against the CAA, the district administration in Kalin Nagri Bhadohi on Friday disrupted internet service for some time of the day. But Muslims emerging from their Friday prayers performed a fierce demonstration and also threw stones at the intervening police. In the end, the police released tear gas shells and charged light sticks to disperse the crowd.

Between 500 and 600 people gathered in a procession to protest against the changed law after offering prayers in the afternoon in a mosque located in Kazipura of Bhadohi, the largest city of the district, and started shouting slogans near the Azimullah crossroads. When the police force that was present on the spot intervened, the protesters changed their route moved towards Janu Shaheed Baba Mazar towards Station Road.

When the police stopped the protesters after a tirade, the arsonists threw stones at the police. The police resorted to lathi-charge and released tear gas shells here as well. The protesters damaged three motorcycles and a car.

Uttar Pradesh riot scene #5: Muzaffarnagar

Thousands of Muslims staged a protest after the prayers in Muzaffarnagar, Uttar Pradesh, against the CAA. Here, followers of the ‘religion of peace’ created a ruckus after offering namaz from Khalapar and heading towards the Meenakshi Chowk where the police had a fierce clash with the protesters.

Activists staged a demonstration on Kachchh Road, Madina Chowk of Muzaffarnagar where the police stopped the protesters who, enraged, threw stones at the police. The protesters ransacked a motorcycle and a car. Demonstrators then held their show at the Islamia College.

Some policemen, who were injured when the crowd near the college resorted to stone-pelting, were admitted to a hospital.

Uttar Pradesh riot scene # 6: Gorakhpur

The crowd at Nakhas in Gorakhpur turned into a mob to oppose the CAA. When the police came to pacify the crowd, the cops had to take recourse to mild lathi-charge. They fired some tear gas shells, too. The additional SP’s car was damaged in the violence.

SSP Sunil Kumar Gupta informed after hours that the situation was under control and that strict action had been taken against those who threw stones at the police while action would be taken against all those who were involved in this case. “The police are on alert,” he said.

At the Madina Chowk, two youths were beaten up by a mob, believing them to be in favour of the law. Both are holed up in the house of an officer of the Civil Security Corps. Their names are Vikas Jalana and Satya Prakash. ADM City Rakesh Kumar Srivastava is trying to convince the crowd with the help of a maulvi, but the crowd is not ready to budge. They want the two Hindus to be handed over to the crowd.

After the police were alerted, shops were closed in the Badi Masjid area near Maroof Ghantaghar in the morning. People who reached the mosque in large numbers started protesting outside after the prayers of Juma’ (Friday). The police tried to pacify them.

Across UP

After offering prayers in Bulandshahr, the ‘believers’ threw stones at the police during a demonstration in Uparkot. Police vehicles were vandalized. The police dispersed the protesters with tear gas.

Miscreants in Amroha pelted stones at the police. The police lathi-charged the crowd. The mob here set three motorbikes ablaze. The situation is tense at the moment. Protesters have gathered at the Chandausi crossroads in Sambhal. The internet has been shut down here.

Resistance to the citizenship law continues in Rampur. The Ulama have called off the strike on Saturday.

In Moradabad, slogans were raised against Prime Minister Modi and Amit Shah. The activists protested with black bands around their arms and violated Section 144.

Stone-pelting was reported from Hapur and Gorakhpur districts of Uttar Pradesh. In Hapur, protesters vandalised vehicles and threw stones. Hundreds of thousands of people reached Tehsil Chaupal in a procession from Bulandshahr Road following the afternoon prayers in Hapur. Police lathi-charged the protesters.

In Firozabad on Friday, people who came out of the mosque in Rasulpur clashed with the police. It rained stones on the police. Many trains were set on fire. Some miscreants fired from their guns. Some policemen were injured in this incident.

Tension prevails in the entire region. Mobile-Internet services in Firozabad region were shut down on Friday due to opposition to the CAA.

Bangle factories in Firozabad were also closed. Roadways trains took long detour avoiding the affected areas.

A heavy police force was deployed at sensitive places. On Friday afternoon, when people came out as batches after offering prayers in the Nalband area, the police stopped them. When they were stopped from going to the market area, they threw stones at the police force. Both the sides fired in the air.

That attracted a larger mob that began stone-pelting. Some policemen were injured. When the police headquarters were informed about the incident, several police vehicles reached the spot. However, the miscreants set the police vehicles and some private cars on fire. The miscreants also vandalised vehicles of the fire service.

Due to this uproar in the Rasulpur area, people fled from the spot and the entire market was closed. The situation in Firozabad remains tense. Police officers have reached the spot.

Lucknow on Thursday

In the old Imambara in Old Lucknow, prayers were completed safely. After praying, the believers went home. There is was no further report of disturbance from the city. ACS Home Avnish Awasthi himself is present in Old Lucknow.

Bangladeshis are expected to be behind the incidents of violence in Lucknow, say sources in the police. In fact, Lucknow Police recovered five mobile phones after the violence in which messages were exchanged in the Bangla language. It is speculated that these miscreants were Bangladeshi who had gathered here for the purpose of perpetrating violence. The matter is under investigation.

In Lucknow on Thursday, violence had erupted in many areas, with the rioters setting fire to buses, cars and two-wheelers as well as police posts. As a precaution, the internet had been shut down till Saturday afternoon. The matter is under investigation here, too.

Internet services were suspended from 12 PM on Thursday in view of the possibility of a Bharat Bandh today. The service remained unavailable until 6 PM on Friday. Police were deployed in sensitive areas of the city and the countryside. Police sources said they will take action against those who commit violence in the name of protest under the National Security Act.

Bahujan Samaj Party president Mayawati attacked the Samajwadi Party and the INC over the violence that took place in Uttar Pradesh capital Lucknow and Sambhal. She said that there was no place for violence in any protest or dharna. She said, “We have always opposed the CAA. We have been opposing it from the beginning, but unlike other parties, we do not believe in destroying public property and violence.”

Mayawati said, “I appeal to the people of my party not to take to the streets during this Emergency-like situation in this country. They may adopt other methods of protest.”

Autopsy of the lawyer who was killed in the violence in Lucknow on Thursday was done today. Post-mortem of the body of the lawyer was videographed, say sources. The result is not out yet.

Police headquarters claimed that 3,305 people were detained on Thursday by police in various districts of Uttar Pradesh to prevent violent protests. A total of 13 FIRs were registered in the State in connection with objectionable, misleading posts and messages made on various social media platforms and five people were arrested. Service providers were contacted to remove 1,786 Twitter posts and 3,037 Facebook and 38 YouTube posts.

Section 144 was enforced on the whole of Uttar Pradesh. While the Internet was shut down in many districts including Ghaziabad, Lucknow, Muzaffarnagar, Bareilly and Azamgarh.

Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath, who has been raging on the disturbance in Uttar Pradesh including in its capital, ordered the seizure of assets of the perpetrators of violent incidents and directed the law enforcement agencies to recover damages for public property from the rioters.

The chief minister said that he is reviewing the violent incidents himself. “The faces of the miscreants have been captured in videography and CCTV. Strict action will be taken on all,” he said. Yogi appealed for peace and directed the administration to monitor rumour mongers.

A report has been lodged by the police in Kotwali Sambhal against stone pelting and arson in the town. Inspector in charge Ravindra Pratap Singh is the plaintiff in this case.

Samajwadi Party MP Shafiqur Rahman Burke, SP’s district president Feroze Khan, Haji Shakeel who is the husband of the municipality head, Mushir Khan, Oajjam Khan, Sayyid Aslam, Asad Abdullah, Nazim, Chaudhary Nadeem, Mudassir, Bilal, Mukim Qureshi, Zia Ashraf, Enamurrahman, Rashik Anwar, Mushir Chaudhary, and Chaudhary Ali Kharadz Huh have been named as the accused besides a crowd of hundreds of unknown mobsters.

Superintendent of Police Yamuna Prasad said that after the ruckus, the first report has been filed by the police. There are 17 people named in it and hundreds are unknown. Police teams are doing due diligence in the pursuance of the suspects. As of late-night, 30 people have been arrested.

A second report has been filed on behalf of Mahavir Singh, the station superintendent of the Brass city depot. An unknown mob is the accused in this case. Three buses were vandalised and one was subjected to arson according to this complaint.

In Lucknow on Thursday, protesters had burnt two police posts in the capital. Dozens of vehicles, including a roadways bus, were set on fire. The mobs also hurt policemen as well as civilians by throwing stones at both. During the mayhem, three civilians were shot at, out of which one was killed.

In all, 51 policemen were injured in stone-pelting and firing. The situation became so uncontrollable that Uttar Pradesh Police chief had to get himself into the ground to handle the situation. Police and journalists were the targets of miscreants. As many as 61 miscreants were arrested. Seven FIRs were lodged.

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