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13 Dec 2019 | 10:58 AM UTC

India: Police clash with anti-CAB student protesters in Delhi December 13 /update 6

Clashes between anti-Citizenship Amendment Bill (CAB) student protesters and police reported in Delhi December 13; further protests, clashes to be expected over near term

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IND

Event

Clashes between police and university students erupted in Delhi on Friday, December 13, over the controversial Citizenship Amendment Bill (CAB). Thousands of students reportedly gathered at Jamia Millia Islamia university in preparation for a march towards the parliament building. Protesters attempted to bypass police barricades, prompting security forces to fire tear gas and use baton charges to disperse the crowd. Dozens of students were reportedly detained and several others injured in the clashes.

A heightened security presence and localized telecommunications, transportation, and business disruptions are to be expected across Delhi over the coming hours and days. Further protests are likely, including in other cities and states across India; clashes between protesters and police cannot be ruled out.

Context

The Citizenship Amendment Bill (CAB), which seeks to provide citizenship to non-Muslim minorities from Pakistan, Bangladesh, and Afghanistan, was originally introduced in 2016. It was tabled, however, due to widespread protests denouncing the legislation. Opponents claim the legislation is in violation of the constitution, which prohibits religious discrimination against citizens.

The Lok Sabha (lower house of parliament) passed the CAB legislation on December 9, while the Rajya Sabha (upper house of parliament) passed the bill on December 11.

Advice

Individuals in Delhi are advised to monitor developments, avoid all protests and demonstrations, prepare for transportation and business disruptions, and adhere to all instructions issued by the local authorities.