Delhi

Demolition of religious structure by DDA in Delhi sparks tension

TENSION IN DELHI: Policemen disperse people protesting against the demolition of a religious structure by the Delhi Development Authority in New Delhi on Wednesday.

TENSION IN DELHI: Policemen disperse people protesting against the demolition of a religious structure by the Delhi Development Authority in New Delhi on Wednesday.  

Several people were injured when the police lathicharged and teargassed residents who were protesting against the demolition of a religious structure by the Delhi Development Authority (DDA) at Nizamuddin here on Wednesday.

The demolition began early in the morning when a DDA squad, accompanied by a large police contingent, reached the site and brought the structure, which was built on government land, down within a couple of hours.

“The structure was demolished following a High Court order of October 28, 2010, on a contempt petition filed by the area residents' welfare association,” DDA spokesperson Neemo Dhar said.

The police said the decision to carry out the demolition early in the morning was taken to avoid inconvenience to residents and vehicles passing through the area.

Area MLA Tarvinder Singh Marwah came to know about the demolition around 10.30 a.m. and reached the police station where a big crowd had gathered.

CM's nod for prayers

“I went to Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit's residence and she said that the area residents should be allowed to offer prayers at the site. She also informed the Police Commissioner and the DDA Vice-Chairman of it. When I returned, people had started walking towards the site. I joined them,” said Mr. Marwah, who is also Parliamentary Secretary to Ms. Dikshit.

Area residents said Okhla MLA Mohammad Asif had also joined them by then.

“Around 1.45 p.m., we were walking towards the site under the Barapullah flyover when the police attacked us from both sides. Then I heard a gunshot. Several persons were injured in the police action,” Mr. Marwah alleged.

Akhtar Ali (36), who sustained a head injury, alleged that the police allowed the protesters to cross the first barricade and then cornered them.

“They started beating us with lathis and lobbed tear-gas shells without any warning. They did not even use water cannon,” he alleged.

“The police action went on for about 15 minutes,” Mr. Ali said.

On their part, the police said trouble erupted when a group started pelting stones at the policemen guarding the site.

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Printable version | Apr 7, 2020 4:23:44 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Delhi/Demolition-of-religious-structure-by-DDA-in-Delhi-sparks-tension/article15516911.ece

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