Lucknow: Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath kicked off a major controversy when he slammed anti-CAA protesters and made a disparaging remark on deaths that took place during the protests. "Agar koi marne ke liye aa hi raha hai to woh zinda kahan se ho jaayega (If someone is coming with an intent to die, then how will the person remain alive?)," he said while referring to 22 deaths that took place during anti-CAA protests in December 2019.
The chief minister said, "No one has died from police bullets. All those who died have died of bullets from rioters. If someone goes to the street with the intent to shoot people, then either he dies or a cop dies."
He also defended police over the deaths of anti-CAA protesters, saying they were shot by other rioters and nothing can be done to save someone with a death wish. Wrapping up the discussion in the state assembly on the Governor's address, Adityanath said the role of the police in dealing with rioters during the protests against the Citizenship Amendment Act should be appreciated.
In hard-hitting remarks, the chief minister said his government supported democratic protests but will maintain law and order by dealing strictly with those indulging in violence.