Anti-CAA protest turns violent in Chennai, cops injured

Protests were also reported in Coimbatore, Erode and Thiruvannamalai

pudupet chennai ani People protesting against the Citizenship (Amendment) Act in Pudupet, Chennai | Twitter handle of ANI

A protest against the Citizenship (Amendment) Act by Muslims turned violent in Chennai on Friday when the protesters clashed with police.

The incident led to sporadic protests across Tamil Nadu, including at Washermanpet in Chennai, where the violence broke out, but the protesters subsequently called off the agitation, following talks with City Police Commissioner A.K. Viswanathan.

Four police personnel—a woman joint commissioner, two women constables and a sub-inspector—were injured in stone pelting, the police said, even as reports emerged that some protesters were also hurt.

Joint Commissioner P. Vijayakumari sustained injuries on her head, the police said, adding that the injured were admitted to a hospital.

Earlier, some protesters were reportedly removed from the protest site forcibly, leading to a commotion between them and the police.

The protesters accused the police of resorting to a lathi-charge.

The Hindu reported around 150 protesters were detained by the police. Subsequently, more people gathered, demanding their release. As a result, security was beefed up in the area.

Viswanathan held discussions with community elders and representatives of Muslim organisations, following which all those detained were released, the police said.

"An amicable decision was arrived at in the meeting with Muslim organisations and they have announced that the agitation will be withdrawn," a police officer said, adding that normalcy had returned to the area.

The Hindu reported that the around 1,000 women had started a protest against the Citizenship (Amendment) Act in Washermanpet on Friday afternoon. Tension increased in the evening as hundreds of police personnel arrived in the area.

The scuffles triggered protests in other parts of Chennai. " Members of Muslim organisations gathered in places like Alandur, Anna Salai, Pudupet, Mannady and other parts of the city to condemn the police attack. Policemen were deployed in large numbers to control the situation," The Hindu reported.

Protests were also reported in Coimbatore, Erode and Thiruvannamalai.