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29 protesters at Aarey site arrested, sent to judicial custody for 14 days

The police said scores of protesters tried to barge into the carshed area as the Mumbai Metro Rail Corporation Limited began clearing trees following the Bombay High Court's order.

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The police have arrested 29 protesters, including six women, for creating a ruckus at the Metro-3 carshed site in Aarey Colony on Friday night and detained over 200 people on Saturday. All the arrested have been remanded in judicial custody.

The police said scores of protesters tried to barge into the carshed area as the Mumbai Metro Rail Corporation Limited began clearing trees following the Bombay High Court's order. The cops were forced to impose Section 144 (unlawful assembly) of the Criminal Procedure Code after the crowd broke barricades and injured a policeman.

The 29 individuals, mostly college students, have been booked for charges including causing hurt and assaulting a public servant. They were produced in a Borlivali court that sent them to jail for two weeks. MMRCL has said that it had all the permissions to go ahead with the work.

When two of the arrested persons said they have exams on Monday, the court allowed them to write their papers under police protection and asked them to produce the hall tickets.

Also among those arrested are eight tribals, who live in the area.

However, their families have claimed that the men were innocent and their only fault was that they had gone to check why hundreds of people had gathered at Aarey.

"The allegations of highhandedness by the police during the Aarey bandobast are false. All procedures and legally valid steps were taken while handling the situation, which is now peaceful," said Pranaya Ashok, a spokesperson for Mumbai police.

Among the detained were NCP legislator Jitendra Awhad, Shiv Sena leader Priyanka Chaturvedi and former mayor Shubha Raul.

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