Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath, who is facing flak from the opposition and activists over the police crackdown in the wake of Citizenship (Amendment) Act protests, has justified his government’s action, saying that “every troublemaker is astonished”.
“Every rioter is shocked. Every troublemaker is astonished. Witnessing the stern attitude of the Yogi government, everyone is silent,” read a tweet from the Chief Minister’s Office on Friday.
Adiyanath further reiterated that the compensation will be paid by those who caused damages. “Do whatever you want to, but the damages will be paid by those who cause damages. Every violent protester will cry now because there is a Yogi government in UP,” the UP CM’s office added, with hashtag #TheGreat CmYogi.
हर दंगाई हतप्रभ है।
हर उपद्रवी हैरान है।
देख कर योगी सरकार की सख्ती मंसूबे सभी के शांत हैं।
कुछ भी कर लो अब, क्षतिपूर्ति तो क्षति करने वाले से ही होगी, ये योगी जी का ऐलान है।
हर हिंसक गतिविधि अब रोयेगी क्योंकि यूपी में योगी सरकार है। #TheGreat_CmYogi
— Yogi Adityanath Office (@myogioffice) December 27, 2019
Uttar Pradesh remained the worst affected state by the protests against the CAA, with the death toll in the ensuing violence climbing to 19, mostly due to bullet injuries from firearms. There has been official confirmation that one person in Bijnor was killed in police firing. So far, the state police have arrested 1,113 people in 327 cases registered so far and placed another 5,558 people under preventive detention.
In UP, according to figures released by the DGP Headquarters, the 327 cases lodged so far relate to charges of arson, vandalism, attempt to murder, rioting, attack on police force and violation of CrPC Section 144. Preventive detentions have been made under CrPC Section 151 (arrest to prevent the commission of cognizable offences).
Officials said notices have been issued to 372 people, allegedly involved in acts of violence resulting in damage of public property, for recovery through attachment of their properties. Majority notices have been issued in Moradabad, Lucknow, Firozabad and Gorakhpur.
An official statement said 288 policemen were injured in the violence, 61 with gunshot injuries.
This is the biggest police crackdown in Uttar Pradesh since the 2013 Muzaffarnagar riots when 1,480 people were arrested in 567 cases. The riots had claimed 63 lives and displaced an estimated 50,000 people.
Earlier, CM Adityanath had warned that his government would take “revenge” on those involved in the violence by confiscating their properties.
“Iss hinsa mein lipt pratyek tatwa ki property ko zapt karenge, aur uss zapt se sarvajanik sampatti ko hue nuksaan ya kahin par public property ko jo damage kiya gaya hai, iski bharapaee bhi hum un sabhi upadraviyon se karenge. Kyunki yeh sab chinhit chehre hain. Wo sab videography mein aa chuke hain, CCTV ke footage mein aa chuke hain. In sab ki property ko zapt kar ke, inse hum iska badla lenge aur sakhti se nipatne ke liye maine iske baare mein kaha hai,” he said. (“The property of each element involved in this violence will be confiscated, and used to recover compensation for public property which was damaged. All their faces have been identified. They are visible in the videography and CCTV footage. We will take revenge by confiscating their properties, I have ordered strict action.”)
On Thursday, an activist group had demanded an end to the “state-sponsored attack” and an independent SIT inquiry under Supreme Court supervision after sending a fact-finding team to UP to investigate what they found to be a “reign of terror”,
In its report, the fact-finding team listed accusations against UP Police including: denial of right to peacefully protest by “indiscriminate” use of Section 144, curtailing information flow with internet shutdowns, unlawful mass detentions and arrests, posters offering rewards to those who help the police against protesters, inappropriate charges in FIRs such as rioting with a deadly weapon, torture during custody of even minors, intimidation of detainees’ friends and families, excessive and deadly force against protesters, denial of treatment to the injured, and punitive action targeting Muslim neighbourhoods.