As protests shake Delhi, govt orders probe panel

FP

The protestors then pelted stones, threw shoes and bottles at police officials, forcing them to use water cannons. The police made another announcement asking the crowd to disperse. However, when the crowd persisted, police lobbed tear gas shells and continued using water cannons.

Police had to resort to lathi charge when buses and a few motorcycles were damaged by some protestors.

Later, police had to take two damaged buses towards Rajpath and form a security wall of local police and other forces.

But the lathi charge did not stop the students from marching towards Rashtrapati Bhawan. On several occasions, the protestors tried to break the security cordon, forcing the police to fire another round of tear gas shells and again resort to lathi charge. Despite several requests by the police to protest at the India Gate lawns, the protestors remained adamant and sat on the road in front of the barricades, hurling abuses at the police.

Shouting "We want justice", the protestors burnt an effigy of Ram Singh, the main accused in the gangrape of the 23-year-old woman last Sunday, and also carried out his mock hanging on a pole outside Rashtrapati Bhawan.

The protestors claimed that their initial plan was to assemble at India Gate and demonstrate for three hours. Many youth said they learnt about the protest through social networking sites such as Facebook and Twitter and through Blackberry Messenger. Others said they joined in after seeing the protest on TV news channels. The protestors were mostly school and college students who had come from Gurgaon, Noida and South Delhi.

Besides pelting stones, the students also hurled coins, bangles, mud and plants and whatever else they could lay their hands on, at the security personnel. Many also climbed the poles along Rajpath holding placards against the police.

Later in the evening, after failing to get access to Rashtrapati Bhawan, the protestors tried reaching Parliament but were immediately lathi charged. A few minutes later, a candle march was organised at India Gate.

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