On Monday evening, a message was sent to all policemen in the Southeast, Northeast, South and Central Delhi districts to assemble with riot-gear at 7 am on Tuesday and clear the anti-CAA protest sites in the capital. The message said the protesters were violating Section 144 CrPC, which was imposed in the wake of the coronavirus outbreak in the capital.
According to a senior police officer, despite prohibitory orders, several violations were seen on the ground on Monday. “After several meetings, Delhi Police Commissioner S N Shrivastava first tightened curbs and then made a ‘secret plan’ to clear protest sites. All JCPs of ranges concerned were asked to prepare a plan to clear the roads,” said the officer.
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The anti-CAA protest at Shaheen Bagh has been on since December 15, with at least 300 women at the forefront of it. It sparked many similar demonstrations across the city.
“On Monday evening, policemen were sent to protest sites at Shaheen Bagh and Nizamuddin, Hauz Rani in South Delhi, Turkman Gate in Central Delhi, Seelampur in Northeast Delhi to request protesters to clear the road as Section 144 CrPC has been imposed. But they refused,” said the officer.
Later, meetings were called by JCP (Southern) Devesh Srivastava in the southeast and south districts, JCP (Eastern) Alok Kumar in Northeast and Special CP (Central) Rajesh Khurana in the Central district.
“Some officers suggested that the sites can be cleared late at night, but it was later decided to carry out the same in the morning. This was conveyed to the police chief, who suggested that they reach all protest sites at the same time — 6.45 am. If anyone created a ruckus, officers were told to arrest them,” said police sources.
A message was sent to the districts concerned, asking police stations to send their personnel, including women staff, with anti-riot gears and arms. “Paramilitary forces were also asked to be at the protest sites,” police sources added
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