Jahangirpuri demolition drive is selective, unjust
A delegation of Jamaat-e-Islami Hind (JIH) has said that the Jahangirpuri communal violence is a result of police inaction, after visiting the affected areas of northwest Delhi.
The delegation led by JIH Vice President, Prof. Salim Engineer, met the affected families at their residence and interacted with local people to know the ground realities and facts about the situation.
JIH National Affairs Secretary Mohammed Ahmed, JIH Delhi state President Abdul Wahid, and other JIH office-bearers were part of the delegation. The delegation also met the senior police officials there and apprised them of all the facts.
After returning from the visit, the delegation, in a media statement on April 19 said that whatever happened in Jahangirpuri and the manner, in which the violence occurred, clearly suggested that it was not a sudden outbreak, but deliberately planned. The delegation said, “Processions were taken out twice before the violence on that day to spoil the atmosphere. When the third one was taken out during the exact time of Iftar and prayers, some people suddenly came out with drumming and playing loud music. Same people, who were part of the procession, started aggression with shouting provocative slogans. Some of them armed with weapons, openly brandished during the procession, according to locals. The delegation also came to know that permission for the procession had not been taken and adequate police force had not been deployed to control any untoward incident.”
Commenting on the role of the police, the delegation pointed out that the violence could have been avoided had the police done their job properly. The delegation has demanded the police to avoid unilateral action and arrest the culprits as soon as possible and take stern action against whoever is guilty without any discrimination.
The delegation informed that Jamaat-e-Islami Hind is in touch with the victims, focusing on the basic needs of the people of the affected areas and working to meet their legal and other immediate needs.
Talking to media persons during the visit, Prof. Saleem called the violence very painful, tragic and an outcome of a planned conspiracy.
Meanwhile, the JIH has condemned the demolition drive in Jahangirpuri, calling it selective and highly unjust.
In a media statement on April 21, JIH Vice President Prof. Salim Engineer said, “Razing shops and a gate of mosque immediately after the anti-Muslim violence has a very clear meaning. This one-sided illegal action exposed the biased mentality of the administration. If the objective was only to demolish unauthorised structures, legal requirements and standard operating procedures should have been followed and a prior notice should have been issued to the affected families. But here humanitarian considerations and the rulings of the Supreme Court were completely disregarded.
“This is a more reprehensible action because the shops targeted belonged to the marginalised and vulnerable sections of the society. The claim that the demolition was a normal drive and nothing to do with the April 16 communal violence is so ridiculous that no one in the country can believe it. The timing of this communal drive makes it clear that it was carried out to create fear among the Muslims. Such demolition operations were also carried out in Madhya Pradesh recently. This tendency of demolition operations is very dangerous for the country. It is a new trend to collapse the rule of law in the country and encourage lawlessness of government officials.”
Prof. Salim said, “Another condemnable aspect of the Jahangirpuri drive was that the demolition continued unabated for a few hours even after the pronouncement of stay order by the Supreme Court of India. This is entirely a violation of the law. It shows the communal attitude of the North Delhi Municipal Corporation (NDMC). Despite all the opposition parties condemning the demolition unanimously, the government is ignoring the voice of the people and not following any democratic norms.”
Welcoming the stay order, the JIH Vice President has expressed hope that the Supreme Court will deliver justice and help the aggrieved in this case.