Section 144 was imposed across Uttar Pradesh on Thursday and 62 people arrested in the wake of widespread protests against the controversial Citizenship Amendment Bill, 2019. The state government has also served 3,000 notices under Section 149 of CrPC.
“In view of call for protests by many organisations today, Section 144 imposed in the state. RPF, PAC, Quick Response Teams deployed in sensitive areas. 62 people were arrested last night including 3 people who were distributing objectionable pamphlets in Meerut," said OP Singh, director general of Uttar Pradesh police while talking to reporters.
Singh further said arrests have been made in Mau, Varanasi, Aligarh, Prayagraj and Lucknow, and over 3,000 people have been served notices to maintain law and order in the state. “We are monitoring on social media, we have made few arrests and kept few people under observation. I appeal to all to not spread fake news and rumours using social media," Singh added.
Protests against the controversial Act were also witnessed in several parts of the country, including the national capital where Section 144 was imposed near Red Fort. The Centre has asked telecom operators to shut down mobile internet in certain parts of Delhi.
The day began with series of protests across the country organised by student and citizen groups, including all metro cities. In Delhi, massive protests were organised by Left Parties as well as citizens groups. Yogendra Yadav, political thinker and chief of Swaraj India was among several others detained by the police from near the Red Fort.
"I have just been detained from Lal Qila. About a thousand protesters already detained. Thousands on the way. Am told we are being taken to Bawana," Yadav wrote on Twitter with a photo of his with other protesters. He also later shared a photo of protests happening in Haryana's Yamuna Nagar. Left leaders, including Sitaram Yechury, general secretary of Communist Party of India (Marxist), and D Raja of Communist Party of India (CPI) were also detained in Delhi.
Metro rail services were also hit in Delhi as the Delhi Metro Rail Corporation (DMRC) halted entry and exit from nearly 17 metro stations. “As a precautionary measure amid protests, Delhi Metro had to close the gates of a few metro stations. The safety of our passengers and the security of metro property is paramount to us and we have to ensure the same as per the advice given by the authorities," DMRC had tweeted on Wednesday after entry and exit from some metro stations were stopped.