New Delhi: Amid massive protests against the Citizenship Amendment Act, Bhim Army chief Chandrashekhar Azad was detained by the Delhi Police from the Jama Masjid area in the wee hours of Saturday. Along with him, 40 other protestors were also taken into police custody from Daryaganj area.
Azad had escaped police custody earlier as his supporters managed to escort him out from the spot. He was detained as he carried out a protest march from Jama Masjid to Jantar Mantar despite being denied the permission to do so. Earlier on Friday, he led a massive agitation at Jama Masjid in solidarity with the anti-CAA protesters. Thousands of people turned up at the historic mosque in Old Delhi and raised slogans denouncing the newly-enacted law and demanded that the government roll it back immediately.
Clashes broke out during the agitation against the amended Act on Friday. Stone-pelting began after the protesters, who intended to march from Jama Masjid to Jantar Mantar, were stopped by the barricades set up by the police some distance from Delhi Gate.
The stone-pelting in the evening began after the protesters, who intended to march from Jama Masjid to Jantar Mantar, were stopped by the barricades set up by the police some distance from Delhi Gate. Police said due to the violence at Delhi Gate 12 policemen received injuries.
The crowd raised slogans against the government and began pulling away the barricades in an attempt to move ahead. The police then used water cannons on the crowd and also used a water jet in a bid to douse the car set on fire.
"While the protesters were being pushed back, a private car parked at Subhash Marg, Darya Ganj was set ablaze. The police staff immediately doused the fire using water and handy fire extinguishers. Some police personnel including senior officers were injured in stone-pelting. Around 40 persons have been detained. Strict legal action will be taken against those who have been found involved in the violence and arson," read a statement from the Delhi Police.
According to Delhi Police sources, protesters from Seelampur and Jafrabad area in east Delhi - where violence occurred earlier this week - joined in the protest and indulged in violence. First, they pelted stones at the police as well as the media gathered to cover the protest, and then they torched the parked car.
Delhi Police Public Relations Officer (PRO) MS Randhawa was also present at the spot to oversee the situation and appealed people gathered at Jama Masjid to disperse peacefully.
Traffic was disrupted and several metro stations were closed in wake of the protests. The Delhi Metro Rail Corporation (DMRC) closed the entry and exit gates of Rajiv Chowk, Kashmere Gate, Central Secretariat, Janpath, Mandi House, Pragati Maidan, Khan Market, Dilshad Garden, Shiv Vihar and Johri Enclave on the instructions of security agencies. Earlier, gates of Jama Masjid, Delhi Gate, Jaffrabad, Maujpur-Babarpur and Jamia Millia Islamia metro stations were also shut due to security reasons.
(With agencies inputs)