Sunday, August 19, 2012

Violence in Lucknow and Allahabad during Assam protests

Muslims in some cities of Uttar Pradesh took to road protesting against the killings in Assam and Myanmar in Lucknow and several parts of the state. Violent scenes were witnessed in Lucknow and other cities. All the protests were held after the Namaz of Alvida Juma (last Friday of Juma).

In Lucknow, the Muslims took out a procession from Tile Wali Masjid after the Namaz. As they proceeded towards Vidhan Bhawan to lodge their protest, the procession turned violent. They damaged vehicles, bashed up people and broke the cameras of media persons.

The Budha Park which has a tall statue of Budha was the first target. They uprooted the gate of the park to force their entry. Attempts were made to deface the statue but they remained unsuccessful. Next was Hathi Park where also another failed attempt was made to deface the statue.

Later as the procession moved ahead it turned violent. Police used mild force to enforce order. However most of the time they remained mute spectators. Soon the mob turned its anger towards the media persons covering the event. Their camera was snatched while OB Van of Aaj Tak channel was also damaged. The media persons later themselves sat on a dharna at Vidhan Bhawan and the home secretary assured them that proper enquiry will be done.

Similar story was repeated in Allahabad. Stone pelting and damaging the vehicle was done by the processionist. Here police acted tough and used force. Later curfew was clamped for five hours in Kotwali police circle.

In Kanpur also minor violence was reported from Rizvi road and adjoining areas. However situation was brought under control.

Till late night police has registed cases at Allahabad, Kanpur and were in the process of registering in Lucknow. A senior police official stated that list is being prepared and the miscreants are being identified.

The protests were held under the aegis of Jamiat Ulema-e-Hind whose state level functionary Maulana Jahangir Kasmi denied that his men were behind such protest. “We had left after our token protest and then it was only a mob,” he said.

Security forces were caught off guard as the planning for the protest was being held for quite some time. Posters had come up in Muslim dominated areas but still administration did not take security measures.

Muslim clerics however were quick to condemn the violence. Maulana Fazlur Rehman Waizi, the Imam of Tile Wali masjid who led the Juma Namaz stated that Islam has no place for violence and it cannot be justified. Maulana Khalid Rasheed Farangi Mahli too stated that violence is not a means to raise the demands. Protest should be done peacefully.


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