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Student protest against CAA in Delhi turns violent

Violence erupted following a clash between police and Jamia Millia Islamia (JMI) students who were protesting against the amended Citizenship Bill.

SNS | New Delhi |

The protest against Citizenship Amendment Bill (CAB) turned violent on Sunday in the evening in southeast Delhi’s Mathura Road after the agitators resorted to arson and police used force practically turning the area into a war zone.

Violence erupted following a clash between police and Jamia Millia Islamia (JMI) students who were protesting against the amended Citizenship Bill. At least three buses were set ablaze. Police used batons and teargas and were seen chasing protesters through the streets.

The protesters torched DTC buses and a fire tender was damaged, police claimed. Students claimed that the police baton-charged them when they were holding a “peaceful protest”.

Later, the protesters were detained by police from outside Jamia Millia Islamia where heavy police presence was reported around Jamia Nagar. The police have also reportedly detained students of the Jamia Millia.

According to a source in Jamia, the Delhi Police allegedly entered the campus, blocked university gates and attacked the students. Waseem Ahmed Khan, Chief Proctor, Jamia Millia Islamia University said, “Police have entered the campus by force, no permission was given. Our staff and students are being beaten up and forced to leave the campus.”

However, a section of Jamia students have “disassociated” themselves from the violence.

Shortly after the violence, Jamia students’ union in a statement said, “The students of Jamia Millia Islamia disassociate themselves from the violence that has erupted today. We have time and again maintained that our protests are peaceful and non-violent. We stand by this approach and condemn any party involved in the violence.”

The students claimed that “certain” local elements had “disrupted” their protest and indulged in violence.

Meanwhile, two firemen and one cop were injured and one fire engine was damaged in the protests. Metro operations – Jamia Millia Islamia University is on the city’s Magenta Line – were affected, with the entry and exit gates of Sukhdev Vihar Station, Jamia Millia Islamia, Okhla Vihar, and Jasola Vihar Shaheen Bagh, as well as Gate No.3 of the Ashram Station, closed.

The Delhi Metro Rail Corporation (DMRC) closed the entry and exit gates of the Sukhdev Vihar Metro station on Sunday evening in view of the violent protest.

“As advised by Delhi Police, entry & exit gates of Sukhdev Vihar and gate no. 3 of Ashram have been closed. Trains will not be halting at Sukhdev Vihar,” DMRC tweeted.

A Delhi Fire Services official said four fire tenders were rushed to the spot.
One fire tender was completely damaged and two personnel were injured, he said.

Students of Jamia Millia Islamia and locals protested at Jamia Nagar in Delhi on Sunday against the amended Citizenship Act. Delhi Traffic Police tweeted that vehicle movement was closed from Okhla Underpass to Sarita Vihar due to the demonstration.

The varsity had turned into a battlefield on Friday with the students and the police clashing after the protesters wanted to march to the Parliament against the contentious amendment to the Act.

In the wake of violent protest, Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal on Sunday said that no one should indulge in violence.

“No one shud indulge in violence. Any kind of violence is unacceptable. Protests shud remain peaceful,” Kejriwal tweeted.

The Chief Minister further tweeted, “Spoke to Hon’ble LG and urged him to take all steps to restore normalcy and peace. We are also doing everything possible to our end. Real miscreants who caused violence shud be identified and punished.”