22 killed during anti-CAA stir, 322 still in jail, UP government tells Allahabad high court
As many as 883 people were arrested for the violence during anti-Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) protests in Uttar Pradesh on December 20 and 21 that left 22 people dead and 83 injured, the state government told the Allahabad high court on Monday.
“Out of those arrested, 561 are now out on bail and 322 are still in jail,” said Uttar Pradesh government’s counsel, Manish Goel. He told the court that proper medical aid was given to all the injured and that 45 police and government officials were also injured during the protests.
The state government provided the figures to a high court bench comprising chief justice Govind Mathur and justice Siddhartha Varma hearing a bunch of petitions against police action during the anti-CAA protests.
The high court had on January 29 directed the state to file an affidavit and apprise it about the FIRs/complaints filed about police atrocities against protestors during the anti-CAA protests. It asked the government to bring on record details of all those injured during the protests and medical aid, if any, provided to them. The state was also asked whether it verified media reports regarding police atrocities.
In the petitions filed against the alleged excessive use of force by police against the protestors, it has been alleged that it caused deaths and injuries. They called the police action unjustified and said it was in violation of fundamental rights. The petitioners alleged the injured were not given proper medical aid and post-mortem reports of those who died during the violence were not provided to their family members.
The state government maintained excessive force was not used and even police personnel were injured while trying to maintain the law and order. The bench has fixed March 18 as the next date of hearing in the case.
The CAA, which aims to fast-track the citizenship process for non-Muslims who have entered India from Afghanistan, Pakistan, and Bangladesh before 2015, has triggered protests across the country. Opponents of the law insist it is discriminatory and unconstitutional as it leaves out the Muslims and links faith to citizenship in a secular country.