Mufti Shehzad, who is a Popular Front of India (PFI) member and the main accused behind the anti-CAA protests in Meerut on December 20 last year, has been nabbed by Uttar Pradesh Anti-Terrorist Squad (ATS) from his residence in Muradnagar.
According to the reports, the UP police arrested Shehzad, who was absconding after a case was registered against him and his accomplice, Parvez, at Meerut’s Nauchandi police station in December.
Meerut Senior Superintendent of Police Ajay Sahni said that the duo had played an incendiary role during the violent protests on December 20. Shahzad and Parvez were instigating a particular section (the Muslim community) to indulge in violence to vent their ire against the CAA, he added. Six persons died and over five dozen, were injured in the violence, police said.
According to the police, the accused Shehzad and his accomplice had also opened an office of the PFI at a rented house in Meerut’s Shastri Nagar from where the police had recovered several banners and posters carrying inflammatory messages. The police have begun their manhunt to nab Parvez.
He has been handed over to the Nauchandi police by the ATS sleuths for further interrogation.
Anti-CAA riots in Uttar Pradesh
In the aftermath of the passage of the Citizenship Amendment Act, riots, violence, arson and vandalism by Muslim mobs in the name of ‘protests’ against the enactment of the law have taken place across the country.
In Uttar Pradesh, the Muslim mobs, under the pretext of protesting peacefully against the law, had taken to streets to unleash violence and damage public properties.
The Uttar Pradesh police, in its preliminary investigation, had claimed the involvement of PFI, SDPI and Samajwadi Party workers in provoking riots across the state of Uttar Pradesh following the passage of Citizenship Amendment Act in December 2019 that grants citizenship for the persecuted minorities from Pakistan, Afghanistan and Bangladesh.
More than 40 members of PFI were arrested by the Uttar Pradesh police for their involvement in the riots that took place aftermath of the passage of CAA.