Case against 166 for demonstrating against CAA in Bareilly, cleric detained then releasedUpdated: Dec 14, 2019 16:08 IST
The Bareilly police registered a case against 166 people for gathering near Damodar Park here on Friday and participating in a demonstration against the Citizenship (Amendment) Act, 2019. They were booked for violating Section 144 of the Criminal Procedure Code (CrPC), which was in force and restricts gathering of more than four persons.
The police also detained a cleric, Mufti Rahat Khan Qadri, for reportedly making provocative and objectionable comments on the new citizenship law on his Facebook page. He was released on Saturday on a personal bond.
To recall, several Muslim outfits, including the Ittihad-e-Millat Council (IMC) and the All India Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen (AIMIM), had organised a demonstration against the CAA at the Damodar Park and the Naumahla Mosque on Friday.
Senior superintendent of police Shailesh Pandey said, “We had made it clear to the organisations behind the protest and people in general that no public meeting or gathering would be allowed without prior permission as Section 144 was in force in the district.”
He said that despite the warning, people gathered near Chow Chauraha and organised a demonstration. “We are taking action against them under relevant sections of the Indian Penal Code for violating the law,” Pandey said.
Mufti Rahat Khan Qadri, who runs the organisation Mussalmanan-e-Bareilly and had earlier staged demonstrations against the removal of Jammu & Kashmir’s special status under Article 370, was picked up by the Izzatnagar Police here after he posted an ‘inflammatory’ comment on the social media, said police.
“We were keeping a tab on all those who had given a call for demonstration without obtaining prior permission from the administration. Mufti Qadri was detained for similar reasons as he had decided to go ahead with the Friday demonstration sans permission,” said Izzatnagar police station in-charge Praveen Kumar.
Later, the cleric’s supporters agitated at Damodar Park, demanding his release.
Meanwhile, Maulana Tauqir Raza of the Ittihad-e-Millat Council, who also organised a demonstration against the CAA at the Naumahla Mosque on Friday, said that he had convened a meeting of Muslim religious organisations to chalk out the future strategy.
“I have invited several Muslim outfits to the meeting, which will be held in New Delhi on Monday, to decide future strategy and action plan on how to proceed against the CAA,” he said adding that agitations against the new law would continue if it was not withdrawn by the Centre.