Five detained for drawing anti-CAA rangoli in Chennai
The Chennai city police have detained at least five people, including four women, for drawing anti-Citizenship (Amendment) Act and anti-National Register of Citizens kolams, or rangoli, in the city’s Besant Nagar area on Sunday.
The protesters who were making the rangoli in the busy Besant Nagar bus stop were asked by the police to go somewhere else as traffic movement would be hampered. Thereafter, they decided to go into the streets to draw the rangolis which then invited the police action.
“The protesters have asked us to extend permission for this unique protest. As they wanted to draw rangoli in the public places, we denied permission as it would disturb the public. But, they continued drawing rangoli at the Besant Nagar bus stop. As it obstructed the traffic in the morning hours, we asked them to move. But they again drew rangolis in public places,” said a senior officer who wants to remain unnamed.
The police first detained them in a private marriage hall in the Besant Nagar. When two of their advocates visited the police, the police detained them as well and all were kept in the marriage hall, according to the police.
“As it was an unlawful assembly, we made a preventive arrest. Later, we released them all by noon,” the police officer told HT.
Tamil Nadu’s opposition party Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam(DMK) and its ally Marumalarchi Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam(MDMK) condemned this move and criticised the Tamil Nadu government for taking this action against the protesters.
“Edappadi Palaniswami’s AIADMK government’s police have detained anti-CAA protesters for just drawing kolam. This is against right provided by the constitution of India,” Stalin said in a tweet.
He further urged the police to release all the protesters who were detained in the morning.
“The Anarchy of Tamil Nadu government has been increasing day by day,” added Stalin.
DMK’s Thoothukkudi MP Kanimozhi Karunanidhi slammed the TN Police and said it is only today that she learnt that drawing rangoli is anti-national.
“I have learnt that cleaning our doorsteps and drawing rangoli are the act of anti-nationalism. I congratulate Edappadi K Palaniswami for his act to arrest people who had drawn Rangolis as he wants to satisfy his big boss,” said Kanimozhi.
MDMK general secretary and Rajya Sabha MP Vaiko said that AIADMK government wants to control the anger of citizens by using police.
“The TN rulers should go through history as police action cannot control the true anger of the people. Youths, Students, Women and every section of the Indian society is protesting against the CAA and NRC,” Vaiko said in a tweet.
The five protesters were booked for assembling unlawfully, said police sources. the police did not reveal the identity of those arrested.
Earlier in the day, police booked 10,000 Muslims associated with different Muslim outfits, including Tamil Nadu Thowheeth Jamaath, for holding a massive rally against CAA in Chennai’s Alandur on Saturday. The protest was carried out despite police denying permission for the same.