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Citizenship Act stir: Violence rocks Delhi; buses torched, 60 injured

BJP blamed the Aam Aadmi Party for the violence and demanded it stop "provoking people", but the AAP rejected the charge

Press Trust of India 

A bus set ablaze during protests against the Citizenship (Amendment) Act at Mathura Road, New Delhi. Photo: PTI
A bus set ablaze during protests against the Citizenship (Amendment) Act at Mathura Road, New Delhi. Photo: PTI

Protesters torched four public buses and two police vehicles on Sunday as they clashed with police in south Delhi’s New Friends’ Colony near Jamia Millia Islamia university during a demonstration against the amended Citizenship Act, leaving six cops and two firemen injured, officials said.

The trouble started during a protest by students of Jamia university. But a students’ body later said they had nothing to do with the violence and arson and alleged that “certain elements” had joined in and “disrupted” the demonstration. Soon after the violence, Jamia Millia Islamia Chief Proctor Waseem Ahmed Khan claimed that the entered the campus forcibly without any permission and beat up staff members and students who were forced to leave the campus.

Condemning the police action, university vice chancellor Najma Akhtar said students who were inside the library have been taken out and are safe.


After the violence, a Jamia students’ body issued a statement, saying, “We have time and again maintained that our protests are peaceful and nonviolent. We stand by this approach.”

Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal said any kind of violence is unacceptable and protests should remain peaceful. Deputy CM Manish Sisodia said that all schools in southeast Delhi would remain closed on Monday.

Meanwhile, scores had gathered outside the old Headquarters to protest the force’s handling of the situation after the agitation near Jamia university on Sunday turned violent. The protesters raised anti-police slogans outside the headquarters in ITO area, after a call for it was given by the Jawaharlal Nehru University Students Union. Other students' bodies endorsed the protest call.


Hours after a protest march at Jamia, clashes erupted at the Aligarh Muslim University on Sunday evening where students were agitating against the violent crackdown in the capital. In disturbing visuals, cops were seen smashing bikes on streets in Aligarh, firing tear gas shells from the main gate of the campus amid protests at the university.

Let us continue operations in Assam: Oil India

Crude oil and gas production in Assam have witnessed a drastic fall due to the ongoing state- wide protest against the contentious Citizenship (Amendment) Act, affecting supply of petrol, diesel and LPG in many districts. On Saturday, the Oil India appealed to people of the state in local papers to allow it to carry out day-to-day operations, which the firm said, have been “severely impacted”.


Internet services in Bengal suspended

Internet services were on Sunday suspended in five districts of West Bengal, amid violent protests against the amended Citizenship Act across the state, a senior government official said.


BJP Assam ally does a U-turn

Asom Gana Parishad (AGP) , an ally of the ruling BJP, said on Sunday that it would file a petition in the Supreme Court praying for revocation of the amended Citizenship Act, party leader Kumar Deepak Das said.

He asserted that the AGP respected the sentiments of common people, who were wary that the law might threaten their identity and existence. “We will take the legal route to seek revocation of the amended Act as the indigenous people of Assam are apprehensive that their identity, language might come under threat,” Das, a former Rajya Sabha MP, told PTI.

Sources said a delegation of the AGP, led by Das, would leave for Delhi in the evening to file the plea in the apex court.

Highlights
  • Four buses torched in south Delhi, scores protest at HQ
  • Police entered campus by force, no permission taken: Jamia Chief Proctor
  • BJP Assam ally to file plea in top court for revocation of the Act
  • Two more die of gunshot wounds in Guwahati, toll hits 4; curfew relaxed

First Published: Mon, December 16 2019. 00:20 IST
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