Delhi Police detains 18 minors in Daryaganj during anti-CAA protests

The minors were allegedly stripped below the waist and beaten with lathis, belts and denied medical care and lawyers


“You can jail a revolutionary, but you can’t jail a revolution” – Huey Newton.

In the endeavour of doing exactly what the above quote says, the Centre and the police have left no stone unturned to intimidate the protestors and quell the uprising against the Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) and the National Register of Citizens (NRC).

After the uncalled for violence by the police on the students of the Jamia Millia Islamia University (JMIU) and the Aligarh Muslim University (AMU), allegations and actual evidence of police brutality, including that against minors, has surfaced from the recent protest in Delhi’s Daryaganj.




The police was also allegedly found to be collecting brick pieces and stones from the rooftops in Daryaganj, one can safely assume, this was to charge the protestors with.




Acting on rumours

The protest that started from Delhi ITO to Daryaganj saw even larger numbers than protests at JMIU, Jantar Mantar and India Gate. The Wire who was present at the protest reported that apparently in response to stone pelting that had taken place, the police got out their water cannons and charged ahead to beat people with lathis. Seeing a car that had been set ablaze, the police thought it was the protestors’ doing and proceeded to terrorise people from along Daryaganj to the mosque.

Detention of minors

The Citizen reported that 18 minors were detained by cops during the protest. A boy of 14 years of age was seen at the Daryaganj Police Station, shivering, with a visible head injury, his clothes soaked in blood. The injuries sustained were confirmed to be inflicted ‘during the protest at Delhi Gate’ in his medical report. But the boy also claimed to have been beaten up by the police in custody. He said his pants were taken down and the police shouted slurs at him as they beat him up.

(Picture – The Citizen)

Lawyers present at the venue told The Citizen that 11 people had been charged with obstruction of justice and unlawful assembly and the detainees, 42 at Daryaganj police station and 30-35 at Seemapuri police station, were from the Jama Masjid, Osmanabad areas. The lawyers also stated that the detained minors had informed them that they were beaten in lock up, stripped from below the waist and a hot cloth was placed on their bodies while they were being beaten up. Some children who were not even part of the protest were picked up and beaten too.

A minor who spoke to The Wire, showed the reporters bruises on his head and legs, saying 10-15 men who had put him in a bus, started beating him then itself. On reaching the police station, he was stripped of his pajamas and beaten with belts and he fell unconscious soon after. Another 17-year-old boy suffered the same fate too.

Violation of the law

Thanks to the intervention of unrelenting lawyers who claimed that the police was ‘highly uncooperative’, the minors were released from custody. According to The Wire, the police refused to part with information and Mishika Singh, a lawyer quoted an ACP allegedly saying, “Darwaza band karo, inko andar ghusne mat doh, inke baat karne ki zaroorat nahi hai.”

“The protestors were detained at around 6 pm, but the lawyers were only allowed to see them after midnight. “They were without representation for six and half hours,” a lawyer told The Citizen. They were allowed to meet the detainees only after filing an application from the court that directed the police to do so. “I deem it fit to direct SHO PS Daryaagnj to allow the detainee to meet their advocates in terms of Section 41D of Code of Criminal Procedure (CrPC),” the order said.

Even the medical reports of the minors that clearly stated that their injuries were due to lathi charge, were not being handed over the parents. Only after the lawyers reminded them of the law, did the police part with the same. Not only this, the police also attempted to force the parents to sign statements that their kids were released in a ‘sound condition’. The lawyers foiled this bid and made sure the parents got the medical receipts.

A team of doctors too was denied access inside the Daryaganj police station to assess the health of detainees.

(Picture – The Citizen)

At Seemapuri police station too, the scene was not very different. The police laid out detainees on a bench and beat them with lathis while abusing them, demanding to know who was involved in stone-pelting. The adults detained at Seemapuri were charged with Article 307 of the IPC – Attempt to Murder.

(Picture – The Citizen)

The alleged forced action of the Delhi police in an apparent crackdown on violent protestors is abhorrent. Taking the law into their own hands, they not only detained minors, but they detained minors who were not part of the protest and even denied the detainees basic rights to medical facilities in light of their heinous state-sponsored injuries and access to lawyers to ensure their safe return.

At least 25 people have died, some due to police firing, throughout the country, mostly in BJP ruled states, during state measures to control the anti-CAA protests. Women and children have been beaten up and detained without explanation and a student from AMU has had to have his hand amputated after tear gas shelling in the campus.

In the wake of the protests against the CAA and NRC, the Delhi police has become infamous for inflicting violence on peaceful protestors. The uncontrollable high that the police get from being given a free rein by the Centre is now becoming visible in all the states governed by the BJP. The proof is all on tape, but will the Delhi police be probed for the flagrant human rights violations carried out by those who were supposed to protect the protestors?

Unknown outsiders infiltrated protests at AMU: M Salman Imtiaz
UP police detain, lathi-charge peaceful Samajwadi Party protestors
Lucknow Police detain and assault peaceful protesters, including women



Related Articles