Peaceful anti- CAA protests held across the country amid heavy security
The situation across the country was peaceful on the last Friday of the year amid multilayered security measures put in place to prevent a repetition of the violence that broke out a week ago during protests against the Citizenship (Amendment) Act , or CAA, after weekly Muslim prayers.
In Uttar Pradesh, where at least 21 people died during violent protests on December 20 and in the following days, a dense security cover was clamped on sensitive areas to deter potential troublemakers. “Entire UP was peaceful. There is no report of any untoward incident from anywhere in the state. The state was placed under a thick security cover with the deployment of central paramilitary forces in sensitive areas,” state director general of police (DGP) OP Singh said.
He said drones were also used to keep vigil, particularly in areas where violence had broken after Friday prayers last week.
Inspector general of police, law and order, Praveen Kumar said the situation was normal across the state as the police remained alert and kept a tight vigil.
Tension gripped Periyakulam town in Theni district of Tamil Nadu on Friday when protestors proceeded to lay siege to the office of deputy chief minister O Panneerselvam’s son, O P Ravindranath Kumar, for voting in support of the CAA in Parliament.
Following a call by a few Muslim organizations, over 500 protestors gathered in the town and went in a procession to the office of the All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (AIADMK) MP. The protestors, who resorted to a road blockade, were persuaded by the police to disperse later. Peaceful protests, however, continued across the state.
In Rajasthan, members of the Meo community staged a protest march from Meo Boarding to Ambedkar Circle in Alwar.
Later, they handed over a memorandum to the additional district the magistrate in the name of the President, requesting him to scrap the CAA.
In Uttarakhand, the police registered a case against 120 people who staged a rally in Dehradun on Friday in favour of the CAA without seeking permission.
Arun Mohan Joshi, senior superintendent of police (SSP), Dehradun, said Reena Goyal, founder of the organisation, led the rally from the Dehradun Municipal Corporation office to the office of the district magistrate.
In Bihar, the simmering discontent in the ruling Janata Dal (United) over its support to the CAA took its first toll on Friday when the party’s minority cell general secretary, Khawaja Shahid, resigned from the JD(U).
“The decision of chief minister Nitish Kumar was against the party’s constitution, which supported secularism. I am peeved at his decision to support the Act. I, along with several active members of the party, am also resigning from the party,” said Shahid, who hails from Katihar district.
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