India citizenship law protests leave 18 dead

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Three dead in widespread protests across India despite bans on public gatherings

India citizenship law protests leave 18 dead

Nine of the people died of gunshot wounds and the 10th victim was a child who died in the city of Varasani after being struck with a stone, according to Shirish Chand, an Uttar Pradesh police spokesman.

Three dead in widespread protests across India despite bans on public gatherings

Three people were killed in protests in the cities of Mangalore and Lucknow on Thursday. Last week, five people died in north-eastern Assam state when protests there first erupted.

The law in question promises to fast-track citizenship for several religious minorities — but not Muslims.

People have taken to the streets across India in response to the new rules, which was passed into law last week, despite a ban on public gatherings in various regions now in place.

People take part in a protest against India's new citizenship law in Chennai on December 21, 2019.
Following Thursday’s violence, police in Uttar Pradesh have enforced a law banning public gatherings of four or more people for the next 15 days.

The colonial-era restrictions — known as Section 144 — were going to be imposed across the entire state, Avnish Awasthi, senior official in the Uttar Pradesh Home Department, told CNN.

Internet services in the state capital Lucknow will also remain suspended until Saturday evening, after protesters set fire to buildings and clashed with police on Thursday.

Has India's Narendra Modi gone too far with controversial new citizenship law?

“Yesterday, internet connectivity in 73 districts was shut down,” Awasthi said. “For the rest of the districts in the states, district officials are making individual decisions.”

In the capital New Delhi, section 144 remained in place in three key protest areas Friday, police said.

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