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Anti-CAB bandh: Violence in Tripura, ailing child dies after getting stuck in road blockade

Anti-CAB bandh: Violence in Tripura, ailing child dies after getting stuck in road blockade

Agartala: A two-month-old ailing child died on way to a hospital when the ambulance carrying the baby got stuck in a road blockade, while about 40 people were injured in clashes in three places of Tripura during an 11- hour bandh to protest against the contentious Citizenship (Amendment) Bill on Tuesday, police said.

The state's BJP government suspended Internet service for 48 hours to prevent mischief mongers from spreading rumours in the state that witnessed skirmishes between tribals and non-tribals and at least one incident of arson.

The police had to fire four rounds in the air to disperse clashing groups at Bishramganj in Sepahijala district.

Around 15 people were injured in the clash at Bishramganj where the ambulance got stuck in a road blockade leading to the baby's death.

The seriously ill child was being taken from Udaipur in Gomati district to Ambassa in Dhalai district for better treatment when the incident occurred, police said.

Besides Bishramganj, violence between tribals and non-tribals occurred at Kanchanpur in North Tripura district and Manughat Bazar in Dhalai district.

Prohibitory orders under Section 144 CrPC were imposed in the three areas.

A large group of bandh supporters entered a tribal village in Anandabazar area of North Tripura district and attacked its people, forcing many villagers to seek refuge in the local police station.

"Six Tripura State Rifles personnel and at least 15 villagers were injured in the clash," Subdivisional Magistrate of Kanchapur, Abhedananda Baidya, said.

At Manughat in Dhalai district, at least four persons were injured in a clash between bandh supporters and shop keepers. A market in which shops are owned mostly by non- tribals, was set on fire there, police said.

However, no casualty was reported in the incident.

The state government issued a notification suspending Internet service for the next 48 hours from 2 pm on Tuesday to stop rumours being spread.

Chief Minister Biplab Kumar Deb said the protestors did not know why they are observing a bandh when the state's tribal areas have been kept outside the purview of the CAB.

The 11-hour bandh called by the North East Students' Organisation (NESO), backed by various other bodies and political parties, evoked a strong response in the Tripura Tribal Areas Autonomous District Council (TTAADC) areas.

The TTAADC constitutes two-third of the state's territory and is the home to tribals who form one-third of its population.

However, the has little impact in the state's plain areas.

The shutdown threw normal life out of gear in Dhalai, West Tripura and Khowai districts with residents remaining indoors while attendance at offices was thin, police said.

Train services in the entire state came to a complete halt and vehicular movement was affected.

Bandh supporters blocked an important road near Astable Ground in Agartala for some time.

Condemning the violence during the bandh, Joint Movement Against Citizenship Amendment Bill (JMACAB) president BK Hrangkhawl alleged that the police failed to control the situation.

"We hope the Central government will hear our plea and withdraw the CAB to provide protection to the indigenous people in Tripura," he told a press conference.

Hranghkawl made it clear that JMACAB would continue its stir against the CAB until the Centre guarantees the protection of indigenous people in Tripura.

The legislation seeks to grant Indian citizenship to religious minorities of Afghanistan, Pakistan and Bangladesh who are fleeing persecution there, was passed in the Lok Sabha with 311-80 votes.

However, Home Minister Amit Shah announced in the Parliament on Monday that areas under the Tripura Tribal Areas Autonomous District Council (TTADC) will be exempted from the ambit of the Bill.



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