Man brandishes gun in Delhi's Jamia area; detained

Man brandishes gun in Delhi's Jamia area; detained

With police in riot gear watching, a youth chanting "yeh loh azaadi" (here's your freedom) opened fire at a group of anti-CAA students from Jamia Millia University marching towards Rajghat, the memorial of Mahatma Gandhi, on Thursday afternoon, injuring a journalism student and triggering a massive protest.

The youth, reported to be a minor and resides in Uttar Pradesh's Jewar, was among the marching students but broke out of the group and started walking backwards brandishing a country-made pistol which he had hid in his jacket. The accused had identified himself to reporters.

In full glare of TV cameras, the youth pulled out the fire-arm and chanting "here's your freedom", opened fire in which one mass communication student Shadab Farooq, who belongs to Kashmir, suffered injuries on his left hand.

A policeman was seen walking towards him and a few metres away when the youth opened fire while other security personnel were at a distance. Soon after he fired from his pistol, police took him into custody.

There was tension in Jamia Nagar following the incident as protesters, including locals, clashed with police and broke barricades.

The incident took place as Delhi is in the midst of campaigning for Assembly elections. Chief Minister and AAP supremo Arvind Kejriwal tweeted, "what is happening in Delhi? The law and order is deteriorating. Please take care of Delhi's law and order."

Before he opened fire, he apparently went live on Facebook at least five times showing himself walking with the protesters. While the Facebook account has been deleted, his posts, whose screen shots were available on social media, indicated that he was angry at the protests.

One of the posts in Hindi claimed that on his last journey, he should be draped in saffron amid shout slogans of Jai Shri Ram. Another post read, "Shaheen Bagh, Game Over".

With the incident triggering wide spread protests that could escalate beyond Delhi as well, Union Home Minister Amit Shah tweeted in the evening that he has instructed Delhi Police Commissioner Amulya Patnaik to take strict action.

Even as Opposition leaders pounded on the BJP for the incident, saying its "hate politics" have resulted in such incidents, Shah added, "the central government will not tolerate any such incident, it will be taken seriously and the culprit will not be spared," he said

"What kind of police force is Amit Shah running? Delhi police is standing idly by as a man shoots at peaceful protesters. Is this what BJP leaders like MoS Finance, Anurag Thakur intended? Creating an armed militia of radicalised youth," Congress tweeted.

CPI(M) General Secretary Sitaram Yechury said, "the hate-speech and call to violence by Union ministers and BJP leaders – along with the silence of Prime Minister Narendra Modi -- has led to this shameful outcome. This is the kind of India this government wants to create."

Students said they were moving towards the Holy Family Hospital where the police had put barricades. As they were nearing the barricades, the youth took out the gun and later opened fire.

As police said the students were denied permission to march from Jamia to Rajghat on the occasion of death anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi, students squatted on the roads, amid chanting "go back, go back" police.