In the wake of widespread protests in the city over the Citizenship (Amendment) Bill, 2019, Section 144 has been imposed in Kamrup Metro district with immediate effect, which prohibits assembly of more than five people in an area.
Under the section in any public assembly of more than five persons is prohibited, carrying of weapons, explosive, taking out mass rally and use of loudspeaker is not allowed.
City police commissioner Deepak Kumar said, “We have decided to impose indefinite Section 144 from 6.15 pm today. And it will remain in force till peace is restored.”
He said the police had allowed the protestors in the day as it was led by students and was largely peaceful. “But now we are seeing that miscreants and criminals are trying to take advantage and are engaging in vandalism and torching buses. We cannot let that happen,” Kumar added.
Internet services have also been suspended in Kamrup (Metro) district, under which Guwahati is located, along with nine other districts of the state for 24 hours from 7pm on December 11.
Defence PRO at Guwahati on December 11 stated that two columns of Army was deployed in Guwahati and will carry out flag march.
Thousands of protesters, led by students of different colleges and universities of the city, had laid siege on the state secretariat at Dispur since afternoon, protesting the Citizenship (Amendment) Bill, 2019 (CAB).
They braved firing of rubber bullets, tear gas shells and baton charge multiple times to reach Dispur and maintain their gherao, and leading the administration to issue the curfew orders in the evening as violent incidents started to occur.
Protests have spread to other parts of the city, with reports of burning of tyres on roads and protests marches being taken out received from almost all major areas of the city, leading to a tensed situation across Guwahati.
Business establishments downed their shutters and all educational institutions and offices declared holiday tomorrow, with the Gauhati University and Dibrugarh University also postponing their examinations.