Lucknow on Thursday witnessed unprecedented violence as protests over the Citizenship Amendment Act gained ground and the situation slowly spun out of control. Protests began in the old city areas on Thursday afternoon and by evening trouble spread to the city centre Hazratganj.
Police outposts in Madehganj and Thakurganj were set on fire, media persons were attacked and five Vans of channels were also set ablaze. Vehicles of media persons and hawkers were also set on fire. A petrol pump near the UP Press Club was also vandalised.
Two reporters were seriously injured in police baton charge. Several policemen were also injured in the stone pelting.
Apart from the two police posts, the mob also set several police vehicles on fire. The police fired several rounds in the air and lobbed teargas shells to disperse the mob. People started coming out from lanes leaving the police dumbfounded.
What made it even more difficult for the police was the fact that women were leading protests from the front. The police force did not have female cops in ample measure. About 20 people have been taken into custody.
This is the first time in recent years that Lucknow has witnessed violence of this scale. It clearly points to a major intelligence failure since the protests were well orchestrated and strategised. As of now, tension continues to prevail in the state capital.