The Assam government has imposed curfew in Guwahati on Wednesday evening as the law and order situation in the state deteriorated as violent protests against the Citizenship (Amendment) Bill continued, official sources said.
The curfew has been imposed from 6.15 pm and will be in place till 7 am on Thursday, the sources said, adding, the government has also suspended mobile internet services of all mobile service providers for 24 hours in 10 districts from 7 pm Wednesday. The districts are Lakhimpur, Dhemaji, Tinsukia, Dibrugarh, Charaideo, Sivasagar, Jorhat, Golaghat, Kamrup (Metro), and Kamrup districts.
The state witnessed protests of unprecedented scale as thousands of protesters came out on the streets against CAB despite the total shutdown called by the North East Students’ Organisation (NESO) ended Tuesday evening.
Protesters mostly students clashed with security forces in front of the secretariat, the seat of the BJP government. To disperse the agitators, police used tear gas shells and lathi-charged them.
The protesters also dismantled a stage erected on the road for the proposed summit of Prime Minister Narendra Modi with his Japanese counterpart Shinzo Abe on Sunday. Protestors also burned tyres, hoardings on the roads.
It is learnt that many protesters were injured during the confrontation with the police. However, the exact figure of the injured could not be ascertained till the time of filing this report.
Police also reportedly detained hundreds of protesters in Guwahati and other places like Dibrugarh and Jorhat.
In Jorhat and Dibrugarh, people blocked roads and rail tracks at various places resulting in the cancellation of many trains.
Earlier today, Assam Chief Minister Sarbananda Sonowal was stuck at the Lokpriya Gopinath Bordoloi International airport for some time after his return from Tezpur in a helicopter, owing to the agitations.
The widespread protest continued even as the bill, which has been approved by the Lok Sabha, was being debated in the Rajya Sabha.
The Citizenship (Amendment) Bill, 2019 seeks to grant citizenship to Hindus, Christians, Parsis, Jains, Budhists and Sikhs who faces religious persecution in Pakistan, Bangladesh and Afghanistan.
Meanwhile, according to reports, the United Liberation Front of Assam has called for 12 hours bandh in the state on Thursday.