Earlier Sunday, video emerged of Russian authorities making their way into Navalny's campaign headquarters with what his spokesperson characterized as power tools, questioning staff and reportedly seized equipment. Police claimed there was a bomb threat at the building, a common tactic used against opposition groups here.
Police arrested at least 240 people around the protests across Russian Federation, according to OVD-Info, an independent group that monitors arrests.
Navalny organized the protests as part of an effort to encourage Russians to boycott presidential election in March.
Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny on December 25, 2017 urged voters to boycott the country's presidential ballot in March 2018 after election bosses barred him from standing. Winning a new term in March would extend his presidency until at least 2024.
Within minutes of arriving at Pushkinskaya Square, where hundreds of protesters had gathered, Navalny was wrestled into a patrol van by police, in dramatic footage posted on Youtube. His followers clamor to wrest him back, but the officers lift Navalny off the ground and carry him feet-first into a large bus waiting nearby.
Demonstrations called by Navalny on Putin's birthday in October also saw few arrests.
About 4,000 people turned up for the unsanctioned rally in Moscow, with many chanting "Down with the czar" and brandishing placards saying "Voters' strike". "This doesn't mean anything. you didn't come out for me, but for your future". "These are real citizens", Navalny wrote, according to CNN. Police searched Navalny's campaign offices in several cities ahead of the protests. Police reported protests in more than two dozen cities, according to official media.
S.Africa In 'new Era', Likely Next President Tells Davos
DEPUTY President Cyril Ramaphosa and his delegation have arrived in Davos to take part in the World Economic Forum (WEF) annual meeting.
Nation wide release of Hindi film Padmaavat amid high security
The government of the northwestern state of Rajasthan had argued it wanted to avoid public unrest by banning the film. He was detained by the police Karni Sena members protested outside a cinema in Lucknow around the same time today.
Land Rover's new, very expensive Range Rover SV Coupe
Land Rover will kick-off its 70th anniversary celebrations with the launch of the Range Rover SV Coupe . Stay tuned to DriveSpark as we bring you full coverage of the upcoming 2018 Geneva Motor Show .
Photographs released by the 41-year-old's organisation showed protests already under way in towns and cities in Siberia and Russia's Far East, including a rally in Yakutsk in temperatures of minus 45 degrees.
Navalny, a lawyer and anti-corruption activist, is gaining name recognition, if not widespread support from Russia's public.
While Putin, 65, is assured of victory with popularity ratings of more than 80 percent, his most prominent opponent is counting on dissatisfaction at stagnant growth and living standards after the longest recession this century has fueled the protest mood.
"In Moscow's Tverskaya Street, the police detained Navalny - an organizer of the unauthorized rally", the press service said. "There is nobody to vote for", the 27-year-old said.
Police also detained several employees of Mr Navalny's Anti-Corruption Foundation as well as supporters in the regions, his team said.
Navalny emerged as a threat to the Kremlin's tight grip on power on June 12 a year ago, when thousands of his followers defied police prohibitions to protest in cities across Russian Federation.
Navalny himself served three jail sentences of 15 days, 25 days and 20 days for organising unauthorised protests past year. Putin ignored another question about whether Navalny was producing a film about the Russian president. Putin simply "criticized unnamed opposition leaders who are only interested in exploiting the country's problems for their own political PR", NPR's Kim reported.