Police make multiple arrests in CAA protest crackdown

Many arrested as police crack down on women CAA protesters in Lucknow 

Protestors stage a demonstration against CAA and NRC near Ghantaghar in old city area of Lucknow. PTI

After failing to force them to call off their 'dharna' at the historic 'Ghantaghar' (clock tower) Park in here against the  controversial Citizenship (Amendment) Act for the past nine days by seizing blankets, bed sheets and eatables, the police on Saturday cracked down on the women protesters arresting many of them.

According to the sources here, the cops forced their way into the dharna and arrested around half a dozen women protesters, including social activist Pooja Shukla.

The police allegedly threatened the other women protesters with stern action if they failed to call off their dharna forthwith. The protesters accused the cops of abusing them and making communal remarks. The police denied the charges.

Rapid Action Force (RAF) had been deployed at the dharna venue, sources said adding that more arrests might be made later in the evening if the protesters did not leave the venue.

The protesters, however, appeared determined to continue their dharna. ''We will not leave even if the police use force,'' said a woman protesters.

The 'Shaheen Bagh' style protest has been going on for the past nine days. The cops had tried every trick to force the protesters to call off their dharna but in vain.

The cops also prevented the protesters from erecting a tent at the Park,  booked people, who tried to help the women with food and also took away blankets and eatables. The administration had also switched off the street lights and closed the public toilet near the venue. 

The police officials, however, rejected the allegations and clarified that the blankets were seized after ''following the due process of law''.

Similar dharnas by the women have been on at many other places in the state.

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