The protest against the Citizenship Amendment Act has become a nationwide phenomenon. The Muslim community, supported by a few ‘intellectual’ liberal elites, is protesting in states and union territories across the country. The Muslim community has been misinformed by its leaders like Waris Pathan and Owaisi that CAA is anti-Muslim. However, the fact remains that CAA/NRC/NPR- none of these have anything to do with the citizenship of the country’s Muslim. Still, violent protests are going throughout the country.
The only state which dealt with protestors and has not allowed the law and order situation to deteriorate is Yogi Adityanath led Uttar Pardesh. In many cities of UP like Aligarh, Kanpur, Bareilly, Varanasi and Lucknow, which have sizable Muslim population, witnessed massive protest against the amendment.
The protestors turned violent and tried to damage public property. But the UP police dealt with an iron hand and this is the reason that law and order is under control in UP, despite having around one-fifth Muslim population, which makes it the state with the largest number of the Muslim population.
As per a report by The Indian Express on 28 December, in Uttar Pradesh, 19 people were killed and 1,246 people were arrested based on 372 FIRs lodged against the rioters. The state has witnessed the biggest police crackdown.
In UP, the police are using most modern equipment including facial recognition technology to recognize the anti-CAA protestors. High profile protestors like former Uttar Pradesh Governor Aziz Qureshi were also not left, the Moradabad Police registered an FIR against him for the provocative speech at Idgah.
Yogi Adityanath also slammed the opposition for being limited to religion and community, and not thinking about working together for Nation building. He warned that the protestors are doing unbridgeable damage to the nation and its societal fabric.
The no-nonsense attitude of Yogi Adityanath government has calmed down the protestors, despite the involvement of terrorist organizations like PFI. UP government has maintained that whoever damages the public property in protest against CAA, will pay for it. “Properties of trouble-makers will be seized and those who damaged public property will pay for it,” said Yogi Adityanath.
When asked about the death of protestors, the CM of India’s largest state replied, “If someone is coming with an intent to die, then how will he remain alive?”
For decades, UP was infamous for law and order problem. With Yogi in power, the situation is under control even in most turbulent times. “There is no place for violence in a democracy. In the name of opposing the CAA, the Congress, SP and Left parties have pushed the entire country to fire. There was violence in Lucknow and Sambhal and we will deal with it strictly. All properties of those involved in damaging public assets will be seized and auctioned to compensate for the losses. They have been captured in video and CCTV footage. We will take ”badla” (revenge) on them,” said Yogi on anti-CAA protest.
Yogi Adityanath’s Uttar Pradesh has been able to contain the violence which is a commendable feat in itself considering the state’s volatile nature thanks to the years of lawlessness under the rule of Akhilesh Yadav and Mayawati.
There has not been a single incident in the state, where things went out of control in protest against CAA, despite a lot of inflammatory rhetoric used by anti-CAA politicians. One policeman in Aligarh Muslim University placated protesting crowds urging to protest ‘democratically’ and if they do so he would stand with them for as long as they protested as long as it was peaceful.
While UP is largely calm, violent protests have emerged in Delhi and West Bengal thanks to the tacit support received from Kejriwal and Mamata Banerjee respectively.
West Bengal has been scalded by escalating violence against the Citizenship Amendment Act, as mobs torched buses, trains and railway stations, set afire government property and blocked roads and railway tracks, disrupting train and vehicular movements. The maximum violence was reported from Murshidabad district and Howrah.
In Delhi, where citizen to law enforcement professionals’ ratio is among the highest, the protests were most violent and disruptive and finally resulted in riots.
The UP Police must be commended for employing a no-nonsense attitude when it comes to dealing with violent protestors. The situation has been under control in the state despite having the largest number of people from the Muslim community and even the involvement of Islamist organizations like PFI could not make the situation out of control. The credit for having such excellent normalcy in the state goes to Yogi Adityanath and his police.