Demolitions in Jahangirpuri Area Despite Supreme Court Order

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Demolitions in Jahangirpuri area in Delhi. Phto source: Twitter@ANI.

India Tomorrow

NEW DELHI—Authorities of the North Delhi Municipal Corporation (NDMC) began demolition of alleged encroachments in Jahangirpuri area on Wednesday despite the Supreme Court ordering status quo.

Jahangirpuri was hit by communal clashes between two communities following taking out of Hanuman Jayanti procession on Saturday last.

The status quo order was passed by a bench of Chief Justice of India N V Ramana on a mentioning made by senior advocate Dushyant Dave.

READ ALSO: Jahangirpuri Communal Violence Result Of “Police Inaction”, A “Planned Conspiracy”: Jamaat-e-Islami Hind

The notice for demolition was issued by the NDMC on April 19. The NDMC in a letter to Delhi police had demanded 400 police personnel, including women police, to be deployed at the demolition site for three days. According to the NDMC notice, the demolition was to go on for three days.

NDMC, however, did not serve any notice to the alleged encroachers. They were also not given an opportunity to present their cases either before the municipal authorities or the court.

Submitting before the apex court, adv Dave said, “This is about a completely unconstitutional and illegal demolition which has been ordered in Jahangirpuri area where riots took place last week. No notice has been served. There is a provision for appeal under the Municipal Corporation Act. We have filed a provisional application before the Supreme Court. It was supposed to start at 2 PM but they have started the demolition today morning at 9 am knowing that we will mention.”

Based on Dave’s mentioning, CJI ordered status quo and listing of the matter before an appropriate bench on Thursday, Live Law reported.

Duirng the same hearing, senior advocate Kapil Sibal mentioned the petition filed by Jamiat Ulema-e-Hind (JUH) about demolition of houses in Uttar Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh and Gujarat without serving notices to the people. The authorities in Gujarat and Madhya Pradesh demolished houses of Muslims on the pretext that stone-pelting had taken place from these houses during Ram Navami and Hanuman Jayanti celebrations. JUH petition has argued that there is no such law to demolish houses as a punitive measure under the existing criminal law. The petition also submitted that no due process of law was followed before demolition.

Sibal submitted that JUH petition be listed along with Jahangirpuri area petition and be heard simultaneously. Moreover, JUH petition pertains to illegal demolitions all over India.

CJI agreed to Sibal’s submissions.

Hyderabad MP and AIMIM leader Asaduddin Owaisi described the demolition drive as “a war against the poorest.”

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