UP Police’s crackdown against CAA protestors in Bijnor, Uttar Pradesh, last year in December, has taken a dramatic turn. In a fresh turn of events, a local court in the area has granted bail to 48 out 83 accused protestors, who were taken under police detention for vandalising shops, private and police vehicles, throwing stones and even firing at them after Friday prayers on December 20.
The judge, in his bail order, said the Police FIR claims that mob vandalised private and public vehicles and even fired at them but no evidence has been produced to support that claim. Additionally, the report claiming damage to one government vehicle was prepared 20 days prior to the violent outbreak on December 20. Medical reports submitted in the court also suggested that the injuries sustained by 13 policemen in the incident are also very minor.
Ahmed Jakawat, the lawyer defending the accused, has said that the government lawyers have failed to present any credible evidence. They have claimed that the mob fired and caused damage to vehicles and property but there is no evidence to prove that. Police have made up these claims.
After thousands of people hit the roads to protest against citizenship law, violence broke out in many parts of Uttar Pradesh between police and local citizens. To take control of the situation, police made several arrests under charges of rioting, vandalism and even attempt to murder. Previously, the cops have also admitted that one of the CAA protestors died because of police firing in the state.
The controversial citizenship bill, i.e Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) has evoked a sharp response from across the spectrum, leading to nationwide protests and demonstrations. Passed in December last year, the act seeks to aid the process to provide Indian citizenship to six religious minorities, i.e Hindu, Sikh, Buddhist, Jain, Parsi and Christian, fearing religious persecution in Muslim-dominated countries- Pakistan, Afghanistan and Bangladesh. Those opposing the act have voiced that it is not only discriminatory but also is against the ethos of the Indian constitution.