HYDERABAD: As protests erupted across India on Thursday against the Citizenship (Amendment) Act and National Register of Citizens, as many as 300 protesters, including many Muslim women, were taken under preventive custody by the police in Hyderabad.
Most of the protesters were detained from the Moazzam Jahi market, from where a protest rally was planned till Exhibition grounds in Nampally, where a call for public meeting was given by the Left parties supported by civil society, minorities, students, SC, ST and BC organizations.
Large number of police personnel were deployed at the entrance gates of the exhibition grounds in Nampally. Protesters, including students and representatives of various organizations and left parties who managed to reach the venue were whisked away by the police immediately.
Several people who were on their way to Nampally to take part in the protests were taken into preventive custody by the police from various parts of the city.
Among the detained in Hyderabad were a group of around 30 girls from the Anwar ul uloom college, who were taken to the Ramgopalpet police station and were released later.
The president of Jamat e Islami Hind Telangana, Hamid Mohammad Khan was also among the detained.
Joint Commissioner of Police, P Vishwa Prasad, speaking to the media near the exhibition grounds said that there are certain routes which are notified for carrying out protest rallies after taking permission from the police. However, the route chosen by protesters for the rally, from Moazzam Jahi market till Nampally is not one of the routes. Also, there was no police permission given to the public gathering in Nampally.
He said that the police requested the protesters to avoid the rally to prevent causing trouble to the public in view of the route is an arterial road which is used by many office goers. However, when the protesters did not relent, they had to be taken into preventive custody. He added that around 300 people were detained and that there was no violence reported from anywhere in the city.
Prasad said that all the persons taken into preventive custody will be released by afternoon.
A bus full of around 60 students of the University of Hyderabad were also taken under preventive custody by the Cyberabad police.
The students were on their way to Nampally to take part in protests on the bus. As soon as the bus started from the university, outside the campus, a few police personnel got into the bus and diverted it to Moinabad. The students were kept under detention at the Moinabad police station, after which they were let out in the afternoon.
Prominent writers, academicians and journalists from the city also conducted a silent protest near the statue of Makhdoom Mohiuddin on Tank Bund under the banner of Progress Writers Association and Urdu Writers Association with placards containing messages saying 'Don't meddle with the Constitution' and 'Stop violence against students'.